(directors: Edward Sampson/John Ireland; screenwriters: Jerome Odlum/Jean Howell/from a story by Roger Corman; cinematographer: Floyd Crosby; editor: Edward Sampson; music: Alexander Gerens; cast: John Ireland (Frank Webster), Dorothy Malone (Connie Adair), Bruce Carlisle (Faber), Iris Adrian (Wilma), Bruno VeSoto (Bob Nielson), Henry Rowland (Faraday), Marshall Bradford (Hillman); Runtime: 73; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Roger Corman; AIP; 1954)

“Uninvolving minor crime drama.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Once only helmer Edward Sampson and dependable actor John Ireland (“Hannah Lee: An American Primitive“) co-direct this uninvolving minor crime drama. It’s based on a weak story by Roger Corman and is written by Jerome Odlum and Jean Howell. Corman’s story about an outcast in a jam is lifted from his first film called Highway Dragnet (1954). The b/w film was shot for $50,000 in nine days.

Falsely accused murderer, small-time trucker Frank Webster (John Ireland), killed in self-defense a trucker from a big trucking company trying to run him off the road in an attempt to put him out of business and after his arrest escapes from jail, fearful of not getting a fair trial. Frank stops off at a Southern Californian roadside diner, where a belligerent trucker (Bruno VeSoto) suspects he’s the escapee and pulls a gun on him when asking for his ID. But Frank is able to slug him and knock him unconscious, and kidnaps wealthy good looking diner patron Connie (Dorothy Malone) and steals her racing Jaguar sports car. The scrappy Connie was heading to a racing rally before the gruff Frank forces her to go with him to the Mexican border. Their relationship starts off hostile, but soon they become romantic when she believes his tale of woe and urges him to surrender.

Aside from its appealing title used again for Rob Cohen’s 2001 Vin Diesel film, which was not a remake, the pic doesn’t have too much else to recommend it. Its best one-liner has Ireland tell Malone: “I like quiet women, stay that way.”

REVIEWED ON 10/25/2013 GRADE: C+