Side Street ★★★★

Like THE NAKED CITY, SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS, and THE WRONG MAN, SIDE STREET does an impeccable job of showing off 1950's-New York City-realness. There's hardly anyone that can do uncomfortably gritty like Anthony Mann, and he's just as adept at showing it in then-modern NYC as he was in the Pacific Northwest of the 1800's from the countless number of Westerns he made. The same cast from THEY LIVE BY NIGHT is reunited under much more claustrophobic circumstances, and despite her character being much less interesting here, it doesn't mean that Cathy O'Donnell still doesn't put absolutely everything into this performance. Then there's that car chase. Shot on location in a curiously empty Lower Manhattan, the chase has an almost haunting, elegiac quality that you wouldn't normally find in a car chase, making it one of the best ever, in my opinion. I fully expect this to climb in stature in my mind on repeat viewings.