name = Blood Alley
imdb_id = 0047889
Albert Sidney Fleischman
John Wayne Lauren Bacall Paul Fix Joy Kim Anita Ekberg Mike Mazurki Berry Kroeger
William A. Wellman
producer = John Wayne
Warner Bros. Pictures
October 1, 1955
runtime = 115 min
language = English
budget = $ 2 million
"Blood Alley" is a 1955 seafaring adventure movie starring
John Wayneand Lauren Bacall. Set in China, Wayne plays a Merchant Marinecaptain in a role originally intended for Robert Mitchumprior to an altercation with the producers [http://www.sover.net/~ozus/bloodalley.htm] . Swedish actress Anita Ekbergand movie thug Mike Mazurkiplay Chinese roles. The film was written by Albert Sidney Fleischman from his novel, directed by William Wellmanand produced by Wayne's Batjac Productions.
Two decades later, John Wayne and Lauren Bacall would make one more film together, "
The Shootist" (1976).
"Blood Alley" tells the story of Captain Tom Wilder (Wayne) whom locals rescue from the Chinese Communists. He ends up attempting to take the people of the village to Hong Kong by a small, rotten paddle steamer.
Wayne's love interest is the tough and determined Cathy Grainger (Bacall) whose father is a medical missionary.
Promotion and critical reception
Originally to star
Robert Mitchumwho was fired from the production by Wellman, Wayne took the lead over after Gregory Peckturned the film down and Humphrey Bogartwanted a large amount of money. [ [http://www.dukewayne.com/archive/index.php/t-1814.html Blood Alley (1955) [Archive - JWMB - The Original John Wayne Message Board! ] ]
The film was promoted by the appearance of Wayne on the number-one rated T.V. show I Love Lucy. In an unusual two-episode arc airing as the show's season opener on October 10, 1955, Lucy and Ethel steal Wayne's footprints from the forecourt of
Grauman's Chinese Theaterthe night before the premiere of "Blood Alley," and complications ensue.
Despite the star power of its lead actors and director, "Blood Alley" received a lukewarm reception from critics [http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/blood_alley/] . The
New York Timesproclaimed, "Blood Alley", despite its exotic, oriental setting, is a standard chase melodrama patterned on a familiar blueprint." [http://movies2.nytimes.com/mem/movies/review.html?_r=2&title1=&title2=Blood%20Alley&reviewer=A.%20W.&v_id=6091&pdate=19551006&partner=Rotten%20Tomatoes&oref=slogin&oref=login] Today's critics have focused on "Blood Alley"'s anti-communist aspect, website sover.net calling it "only a banal actioner" [http://www.sover.net/~ozus/bloodalley.htm] and DVDtalk proclaiming it "preposterous but entertaining" and claiming that "Wayne and Bacall have no chemistry at all" [http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?id=15726] .
Despite the negative opinions in the commercial press, "Blood Alley" maintains a positive 6.2 rating on IMDB [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047889/] , and has more positive than negative reviews from contributors. [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047889/usercomments?filter=best]
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