Fear (1946)

Approved   |    |  Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery

Fear (1946) Poster

In this Americanized retelling of Dostoevsky' Crime and Punishment, a medical student--broke, hungry and desperate for money--murders a loan shark to whom he owes money. After the killing, ... See full summary »


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21 November 2019 | MartinHafer
| "Crime and Punishment"...1946 style.
"Fear" is a decent B-movie...though I think it could easily have been better...especially the terrible ending.

The story begins with Larry in a lot of trouble. It seems his and all the other scholarships have been rescinded and he is deeply in debt...so much so that it looks as if he won't be able to complete his final year in medical school. Again and again, Larry has been to see a nasty unofficial loan shark...one of his professors! And, in desperation, he feels it's acceptable to kill the man...though after killing the guy, he panics and doesn't even steal the money he'd planned to take. Now, he is slowly becoming a bundle of nerves...and the longer the movie progresses, the more guilty he behaves.

The writer of the film obviously thought of Dostoyevsky's "Crime and Punishment", as Larry feels that he's above the law and entitled to kill if he wants. However, like the man in Dostoyevsky's novel, he later realizes he can't live with himself. First, this is a bit dull....why just do the expected? Second, considering Larry had written an article for a magazine that essentially says some people are special and above the law, he's obvious as a suspect. The film, though interesting, lacks subtlety and surprises....but what REALLY ruins the film is the ending...one that completely blindsides AND annoys the viewer....a magical ending that comes from out of no where. Up until the ending, I might have given this one a 5 or 6...and perhaps my 3 is charitable considering just how badly it ends!

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