Deadline - U.S.A.

Director: Richard Brooks
Year Released: 1952
Rating: 2.5

Just before his beloved newspaper "The Day" is sold to a competitor, Pulitzer Prize-winning editor Hutcheson (Humphrey Bogart), playing detective, tries to expose gangster Rienzi (Martin Gabel) ... while making an attempt to win back his ex-wife Nora (Kim Hunter). It has a lot of zip to it, as Bogie goes from schmoozing with the previous owner of the newspaper's widow (Ethel Barrymore) to getting threatened by Rienzi in the back of an armored car to making phone call after phone call (there's a lot of corruption to keep track of) ... it's just too bad it's so sanctimonious, taking every opportunity to praise the work of journalists out there, exposing criminal activity and keeping the public informed: I'm surprised there isn't a scene where everyone stands and salutes the flag. Lack-of-subtlety aside, it's a nice little nostalgia piece about how the press operated "back in the day" - for all the current talk of "fake news," it's a good reminder that a free press is necessary in a democracy (or federal republic): sure they get things wrong, and sometimes veer towards the sensational, but it's all we got.