Race Street (1948): Edwin L. Martin’s Film Noir, George Raft and William Bendix

In one of many collaborations, Edwin L. Marin directed Race Street, modestly produced crime film noir, starring George Raft, William Bendix and Marilyn Maxwell.

Race Street
Race Street 1948 Poster.jpg

Theatrical release poster

The script was based on Maurice Davis’s magazine serial, which appeared in Turf and Sport Digest from December 1945 to March 1946.

When his bookie pal Hal is killed, nightclub owner Dan Gannin intends to take action, even though his police pal Lt. Runson warns him not to take the law into his hands.

But when two thugs working for a mob boss blindfold and beat Dan, Robbie, Dan’s girlfriend and presumable a war widow, is also involved.

It turns out Robbie is not a widow but the showgirl ex-wife of crime kingpin Phil Dixon, still working for him. Though denying it, Dan recalls recognizing the scent of her perfume while blindfolded.

Lt. Runson tries to provide Dan protective custody, but another bookie betrays Dan to the mob. The lieutenant is about to be shot when Dan intercepts the bullet, and dies as Dixon is arrested.

The movie was made by RKO when it was run by Dore Schary but before it was released the studio was bought by Howard Hughes.

George Raft as Daniel J. ‘Dan’ Gannin
William Bendix as Lt. Barney Runson
Marilyn Maxwell as Robbie Lawrence
Frank Faylen as Phil Dixon
Harry Morgan as Hal Towers
Gale Robbins as Elaine Gannin
Cully Richards as Mike Hadley
Mack Gray as Stringy
Russell Hicks as Easy Mason


Directed by Edwin L. Marin
Produced by Nat Holt; executive Jack Gross
Screenplay by Martin Rackin, based on “Race Street,” the 1945 story in Turf and Sport Digest by Maurice Davis
Music by Roy Webb
Cinematography J. Roy Hunt
Edited by Samuel E. Beetley
Distributed by RKO Pictures

Release date: June 22, 1948

Running time: 79 minutes

TCM showed the movie on October 9, 2020.