Not to be confused with the equally annoying picture of the same name that was made from Joseph Moncure March's less-than-epic poem, this one features sex, violence, loud jazz, and as reprehensible a group of thieves and brigands as have ever been seen on any screen. It's a quickie flick
that hoped to cash in on the beatniks who were occupying the media spotlight at the time. Quinn is an ex-football player who is now close to being an animal. He spends his time frequenting jazz clubs with his cadre of pals: Robinson, a drug-crazed knife man, Grant, and pianist Persoff. All are on
drugs and need money to fill their veins. One night the quartet goes out looking for someone to rob and winds up in a jazz club. There they spot Ohmart and her betrothed, Franz, enjoying the sounds. Quinn moves in on the delicate Ohmart and makes a play for her that she welcomes at first, then
turns away from when she realizes that he's a brute. Franz and Ohmart don't have a car and accept a lift from the foursome, not sensing that they are about to become victims. The four kidnap the couple but have no idea from whom to extract the ransom, so they try to get it from club owner Stewart.
When he refuses, Quinn gets the sappy idea of marrying Ohmart and taking her away from Navy man Franz. By doing that, Ohmart's family will be happy to get her back by paying Quinn money. Quinn tells Grant and Persoff to send Ohmart's family a telegram saying that she has eloped with him. Later,
Robinson and Quinn battle, and Robinson is thrown down in the abandoned beach amusement building where they have taken the couple. Persoff, the only one with any sense, tries to explain that Quinn will bring them all to ruin and they might do better to forget this caper. Grant pretends to agree
with him. She tells Persoff to go back to the beach because she wants to tell Quinn that Persoff is a weakling. When they get back, Quinn begins to throttle Persoff. Now Grant realizes that Quinn is bonkers and runs him down with her car, then drives off with Persoff as cops come and free Franz
and Ohmart. This is a despicable picture peopled by despicable characters. The only saving grace is the superb jazz score by Bregman and the players, who include Buddy DeFranco, Teddy Buckner, and Pete Jolly, who did the fingering for Persoff. Other jazz players of note are Maynard Ferguson, Bud
Shank, Barney Kessel, Ralph Pena, Georgie Auld, and Dave Pell. Ohmart had been touted as a new sex symbol in films and given a huge publicity campaign; her glorious career never materialized, although she did appear in a number of films, including BORN RECKLESS; ONE MAN'S WAY; and THE SPECTRE OF
EDGAR ALLAN POE.
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- Rating: NR
- Review: Not to be confused with the equally annoying picture of the same name that was made from Joseph Moncure March's less-than-epic poem, this one features sex, violence, loud jazz, and as reprehensible a group of thieves and brigands as have ever been seen on… (more)