Mobster George Bancroft is doing just fine - new apprentice to help out, a nice dame on his arm - until a rival beats up his lady and the bullets start whizzing by, which is precisely what lands poor George on death row. The script - by Ben Hecht (and others) - gets better as it goes along, leading to a powerful third act that shows this to be a movie about loyalty and honor among criminals. Von Sternberg, known for his impeccable visual sense, has fun with the details - the party scene has as much confetti as all of Times Square during New Year's and the concluding shoot-out has the police using Gatling guns to tear apart an apartment building (so much for realism!).
Director: Josef von Sternberg
Year Released: 1927