GenreCrime, Film-Noir, Thriller ScreenplayHarry Brown CountryUnited States
Release dateAugust 4, 1950 (1950-08-04) (United States) Based onthe novel Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye
by Horace McCoy WriterHarry Brown (screenplay), Horace McCoy (from "Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye") CastJames Cagney (Ralph Cotter), Barbara Payton (Holiday Carleton), Helena Carter (Margaret Dobson), Ward Bond (Insp. Charles Weber), Luther Adler (Keith 'Cherokee' Mandon), Barton MacLane (Lt. John Reece) Similar moviesThe Shawshank Redemption, Escape from Alcatraz, Papillon, Living Dead Lock Up, Barbed Wire Dolls, The Professional
Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye is a 1950 film noir starring James Cagney, directed by Gordon Douglas, produced by William Cagney and based on the novel by Horace McCoy. The film was banned in Ohio as "a sordid, sadistic presentation of brutality and an extreme presentation of crime with explicit steps in commission."
Supporting Cagney are Luther Adler as a crooked lawyer, and Ward Bond and Barton MacLane as two crooked cops.
James cagney kiss tomorrow goodbye 1950 full movie
Ralph Cotter is a career criminal who escapes from prison, then murders his partner-in-crime. Along the way, he attempts to woo his ex-partner's sister (Barbara Payton) by threatening to expose her role in his escape.
Cotter quickly gets back into the crime business, only to be shaken down by corrupt local cops.
James Cagney as Ralph Cotter
Barbara Payton as Holiday Carleton
Helena Carter as Margaret Dobson
Ward Bond as Insp. Charles Weber
Luther Adler as Keith 'Cherokee' Mandon
Barton MacLane as Lt. John Reece
Steve Brodie as Joe 'Jinx' Raynor
Rhys Williams as Vic Mason
Herbert Heyes as Ezra Dobson
John Litel as Police Chief Tolgate
William Frawley as Byers
Restoration / re-release
A restored version of the film was released in 2011. The film was restored by the UCLA Film & Television Archive, in coöperation with Paramount Pictures, funded by the Packard Humanities Institute.
The new print was made “from the original 35mm nitrate picture and track negatives and a 35mm safety print.”
The restoration premiered at the UCLA Festival of Preservation on March 14, 2011.
The film, often compared unfavorably to White Heat, received mixed reviews. Fred Camper, film critic for The Chicago Reader, called the film mis-directed, writing, "Gordon Douglas's direction is almost incoherent compared to Raoul Walsh's in White Heat (1949), which features Cagney in a similar role; the compositions and camera movements, while momentarily effective, have little relationship to each other, and the film reads a bit like an orchestra playing without a conductor."
Film critic Dennis Schwartz generally liked the film and wrote, "This is an energetic straightforward crime drama based on the book by Horace McCoy (They Shoot Horses, Don't They?) and the screen play, which hardly makes sense and is the root of the film's problems, is by Harry Brown. Gordon M. Douglas (Come Fill the Cup/Only the Valiant) helms it by keeping it fast-paced, brutal and cynical, and lets star James Cagney pick up where he left off in the year earlier White Heat as an unsympathetic mad dog killer. This was an even tougher film, but the crowds did not respond to it as favorably as they did to White Heat (which seems odd, since it is basically the same type of B-movie)."