Directed by Robert Wise • 1959 • United States
Starring Harry Belafonte, Robert Ryan, Shelley Winters
Star Harry Belafonte produced this gritty, New York–set noir, which doubles as both a tense heist thriller and an X-ray of 1950s racial tensions. In need of quick money, fallen former cop David Burke (Ed Begley) recruits hard-bitten ex-con Earl Slater (Robert Ryan) and debt-ridden nightclub singer Johnny Ingram (Belafonte) to pull off a bank job. But as the animosity between Johnny and the racist Slater boils over, the entire plan threatens to implode. Written by blacklisted filmmaker Abraham Polonsky (FORCE OF EVIL) and featuring a moody jazz score by John Lewis of the Modern Jazz Quartet, ODDS AGAINST TOMORROW was selected by no less than French crime master Jean-Pierre Melville as one of his all-time favorite films.