No Way Out

No Way Out ★★★★

What a film to see today: an uncompromising, perceptive and prescient film about a blonde, furious, self-pitying white supremacist (Richard Widmark) railing against elites and PC language as he turns the life of a black doctor (Sidney Poitier) into a living hell.

Mankiewicz's film – released just three months before his All About Eve! – is of its time in terms of the terminology and studio trappings, but remarkably relevant and resonant in its presentation of racism as a social disease afflicting the disenfranchised, with some typically fine dialogue, and standout performances from a credible Poitier (in his screen debut) and a silkily charismatic Widmark, whose ability to turn resentment into race hate chillingly foreshadows this fucking binfire of a year.