Wednesday, April 22, 2015


(Post 18 of 50)

A Touch of Evil is Orson Welles's later film noir set on the U. S. Mexico boarder. There may be some plot points that are a little sketchy, but the overall impact of the film is so strong and involving, I didn't care. 

The movie stars Charlton Heston as a Mexican lawman and Janet Leigh as his American wife. But it is Welles himself as Police Captain Hank Quinlan that really steals the show. Quinlan is overweight, drunk, unprincipled and thinks himself above the law when he's on a case. As impressed as we might be with Welles the director, Welles the actor is pretty good too.

And the Elisha Cook Jr. supporting player award goes to…Akim Tamiroff. The Russian born Tamiroff was a character actor who played mostly ethnic characters in over a hundred films, including Jean-Luc Godard's Alphaville. In Touch of Evil, he plays a Mexican hood named Joe Grandi. But Joe is not nearly as sinister as Quinlan. In fact, he is responsible for a lot of the film's comic relief with his constant losing of his toupee and his inability to control the actions of his underlings.


  1. This one really gets under your skin!

  2. People tend to dismiss Heston as a Mexican in this, but it was because of Heston's influence that he was able to get Welles in the movie in the first place!