Johnny Allegro is a black and white 1949 American film noir, starring George Raft, Nina Foch, Will Geer, and George Macready. An ex-gangster (Raft) working as a federal agent runs afoul of a crime lord (Macready) who enjoys hunting humans for sport. The picture was directed by Ted Tetzlaff and produced by Columbia Pictures.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Ted Tetzlaff|
|Produced by||Irving Starr|
|Written by||Guy Endore|
|Based on||story by James Edward Grant|
|Music by||George Duning|
|Cinematography||Joseph F. Biroc|
|Edited by||Jerome Thoms|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
Johnny Allegro (George Raft) is a former mobster who has gone over to the other side and now works for the U.S. Treasury Department as an undercover agent. Allegro is asked to help get the goods on Morgan Vallin (George MacReady), a polished counterfeiter who is involved in a right-wing plot to bring down the American government by flooding the U.S. economy with bogus currency.
George Raft signed on to make the film in July 1948. It was his first movie at Columbia since She Couldn't Take It (1935). Jane Greer was sought for the female lead. However Nina Foch, who had just enjoyed a big stage success with John and Mary, took the role.
The Los Angeles Times thought the film had "polish and novelty as a melodrama" but was still essentially a B picture. "Raft does well enough in a routine way although there is not too much illumination in this performance."
The New York Times said "nothing of any slight distinction" except a scene where someone is killed with a bow and arror "has been written into this low-grade fiction... Nothing with any vague resemblance to vivid acting is contributed by Mr. Raft, who has become one of the most indifferent and comatose actors extant."
- Everett Aaker. The Films of George Raft, McFarland & Company, 2013, pg 138.
- By THOMAS F BRADY Special to The New York Times. (1948, Nov 20). ACADEMY AWARDS WILL BE AT STUDIO. New York Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/108240057
- Schallert, E. (1948, Jul 01). Donna reed will play 'one woman' title role. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/165851640
- Schallert, E. (1948, Nov 19). 'Murder is my business' heflin gotham venture; lake set in 'hurricane'. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/165878819
- Schallert, E. (1948, Dec 13). Lamour company set; slate of comics heavy; nina foch now siren. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/165865388
- MITCHUM IN LEAD OF 'THE BIG STEAL': RKO Moves Actor Into Role Originally Given to Raft -- Bank Tightens Loans By THOMAS F. BRADY Special to THE NEW YORK TIMES.. New York Times (1923-Current file); New York, N.Y. [New York, N.Y]23 Dec 1948: 25
- By, T. F. (1949, Jan 16). HOLLYWOOD DIGS OUT. New York Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/105795779
- Schallert, E. (1949, Jun 14). Slickness all but masks weak spots in 'allegro'. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/165991896
- Crowther, Bosley (31 May 1949). "The Screen". New York Times.