Convicted of a crime he didn’t commit, Rocky (Dick Powell) finds himself suddenly set free after five years when a stranger comes forward with an alibi. The alibi is a lie, of course, but Rocky doesn’t care. He wants to hunt down the real criminals, and he can’t do that from inside prison. First thing on the agenda is to catch up with Nancy; she’s Rocky’s ex-girlfriend and the current wife of the man who was supposedly Rocky’s partner. From there, he just has to kick over every rock he comes across and wait to see what crawls out.
The 1951 film noir gem Cry Danger was directed by Robert Parrish and recently restored by the UCLA Film & Television Archive’s preservation project. It’s being screened here as part of the three-day UCLA Festival of Preservation featuring classic films, shorts, newsreels and television programs.
Among the highlights of Cry Dangerare performances by supporting actors such as Rhonda Fleming as Nancy, who can’t deny her smoldering feelings for Rocky even though she’s married to his best friend; Richard Erdman as Delong, the man with a fake alibi; and Jean Porter as Darlene, the ditzy pickpocket Delong picks up. There’s also William Conrad as Castro, a con who would like nothing better than to see Rocky back inside prison.
Cry Danger screens at 1 p.m. on Saturday. Other films screen Friday through Sunday. Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, 1001 Bissonnet. For information, call 713-639-7515 or visit www.mfah.org.
Sat., May 19, 1 p.m., 2012