This was Rossen's first directorial assignment and it's a good mixture of crime melodrama and black humor, personified in the tough-guy personality of Powell, who had drastically changed his screen image from flyweight crooner to two-fisted gumshoe in MURDER, MY SWEET three years earlier.
Johnny O'Clock is Powell, who has a shaky gambling casino partnership with Gomez. Crooked cop Bannon tries to move in on the operation, ingratiating himself with Gomez and attempting to replace Powell. Foch, Bannon's girl friend, is found dead in her apartment, an apparent suicide, but suspicion
of murder lingers, particularly when Bannon vanishes. Powell is befriended by Keyes, F...