Best Action Movies of 1949
Twelve O'Clock High
In the early days of daylight bombing raids over Germany, General Frank Savage must take command of a 'hard luck' bomber group. Much of the story deals with his struggle to whip his group into a disciplined fighting unit in spite of heavy losses, and withering attacks by German fighters over their targets.
The film concentrates on the camaraderie and the divisions between the troops as they ready for the big offensive. Told in a taut narrative, the men of the 101st, led by Van Johnson, wait out the winter in the Ardennes forest to confront the German army in what would be the last major offensive of World War II. The men are demoralized and trapped, with no hope of support from the Allies.
Mighty Joe Young
A young woman, Jill Young, grew up on her father's ranch in Africa, raising a large gorilla named Joe from an infant. Years later, she brings him to Hollywood to become a star.
Force of Evil
Lawyer Joe Morse wants to consolidate all the small-time numbers racket operators into one big powerful operation. But his elder brother Leo is one of these small-time operators who wants to stay that way, preferring not to deal with the gangsters who dominate the big-time.
Famed aviator Bruce Gentry is working with scientist Andrew Benson, setting out to uncover the origin of a deadly secret weapon---an electronically controlled flying disc which can be directed at moving or stationary targets. The disc was master-minded by an enemy agent known only as "The Recorder" because...he speaks entirely via recordings. Aided by rancher Frank Farrell and his sister Juanita "Nita" Hodges, Gentry consistently foils "The Recorders" schemes, which are carried out by "The Recorder's" henchmen, Krendon, Allen and Chandler, including an attack on the Panama Canal.
Lust for Gold
A man determined to track down the fabled Arizona gold mine known as The Lost Dutchman has an affair with a married treasure hunter, whose pursuit of the mine has lead her to double-cross her husband.
Rope of Sand
Story of a South African diamond mine watched over by a sadistic policeman tasked with looking out for smugglers.
We Were Strangers
China Valdes joins the Cuban underground after her brother is killed by the chief of the secret police, Ariete. She meets and falls in love with American expatriate Tony Fenner. Tony develops a plan to tunnel under the city's cemetery to a plot owned by a high official, assassinate him, and blow up the whole Cuban hierarchy at the ensuing state funeral. Together with a band of dedicated revolutionaries, they begin digging.
The Red Pony
Peter Miles stars as Tom Tiflin, the little boy at the heart of this John Steinbeck story set in Salinas Valley. With his incompatible parents -- the city-loving Fred (Shepperd Strudwick) and country-happy Alice (Myrna Loy) -- constantly bickering, Tom looks to cowboy Billy Buck (Robert Mitchum) for companionship and paternal love.
Sword in the Desert
First American film about the conflict between Jewish nationalists and the British in the creation of the state of Israel.