This is what Joseph H Lewis is all about. The script is a perfunctory and frequently silly murder mystery, with an ending that's equal parts cod-Freud and O Henry. Furthermore, it is set in a ludicrous evocation of France, most embarrassing in the opening scenes in Paris, but still irritating when the plot takes the police inspector hero (Geray) into the country to romance with an innkeeper's daughter (Cheirel) who yearns for the Big City. However, none of this matters. The film is directed like a million bucks. Visually, it compares with The Big Combo as one of Lewis' purest noir achievements; beyond that, it has more cinematic ideas and effects per square foot of screen than any number of contemporary A features. In other words, it's a 'typical' Lewis movie: low on thinks, but with enough style to send lovers of cinema reeling.