Tortured by Fascists during the Spanish Civil War, veteran John Garfield (as John "Kit" McKittrick) returns to find the policeman who helped him escape has supposedly committed suicide by jumping, or accidentally falling, from an open window. Smelling a rat, Mr. Garfield immediately realizes his friend was murdered. With the New York police seemingly in on the cover-up, Garfield begins investigating alone. The first suspects are three beautiful women - presumably red-haired hat clerk girl Maureen O'Hara (as Toni Donne), brunette ex-girlfriend Patricia Morison (as Barby Taviton), and blonde songstress Martha O'Driscoll (as Whitney Parker).
As he relives psychological trauma incurred during his imprisonment, German Nazis close in on Garfield. Wheelchair-bound doctor Walter Slezak (as Christian Skaas) oozes suspicion. "The Fallen Sparrow" lacks some plot development, perhaps because the entire storyline from Dorothy B. Hughes' novel couldn't be included - and, at least one of the villains isn't too difficult to identify. Still, the film is very neatly directed by Richard Wallace, with editing by Robert Wise, black-and-white cinematography by Nick Musuraca, and "Academy Award"-nominated music by Roy Webb. And, as you'll see, Garfield and three beautiful women go a long, long way.
******** The Fallen Sparrow (8/19/43) Richard Wallace ~ John Garfield, Maureen O'Hara, Walter Slezak, Patricia Morison
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