Review: Boomerang! / Cert: PG / Director: Elia Kazan / Screenplay: Richard Murphy / Starring: Dana Andrews, Lee J. Cobb, Jane Wyatt, Arthur Kennedy, Karl Malden / Release Date: May 26th
This latest Masters of Cinema release sees 1947’s Boomerang! get the remastered, special edition treatment. Kazan’s film, based on a true story, centres on a murder in an everyday American town. A priest is murdered on a street corner and all witnesses point the finger at out-of-towner John Waldron (Kennedy). With political pressure on the powers that be to charge somebody with the heinous act, the police, led by Chief Robinson (Cobb), finally get Waldron to sign a confession. Despite this, Waldron maintains his innocence. When District Attorney Henry Harvey (Andrews) starts to fight Waldron’s corner, the D.A. must essentially tear apart his own case. With corruption, blackmail and politics all firmly in play, this is the story of one man deciding to do what is ethically and morally correct.
Boomerang! is a film that stands up to this day, with its themes and thought-provoking nature still relevant and as strong as ever. Kazan delivers a beautifully constructed film which plays as if you’re watching a documentary. Central to all of this is the character of Henry Harvey. With pressure on him from above to convict Waldron, it’s Harvey’s strength of character that puts him on another path, a problematic path. Instead of taking the easy route and just convicting Waldron, Harvey makes a stand, with him left questioning what it is that he does for a living. With a trial shrouded in lies and blackmail, Harvey goes against the grain in order to try and achieve true justice.
For the full review, head over to Starburst Magazine.