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The Informer (1935)

Drama | 91 minutes
3,62 44 votes

Genre: Drama

Duration: 91 minuten

Alternative title: Verraad

Country: United States

Directed by: John Ford

Stars: Victor McLaglen, Heather Angel and Preston Foster

IMDb score: 7,4 (7.199)

Releasedate: 9 May 1935

The Informer plot

1920. The drunk does everything to get a drink and during the Irish riots he turns in a friend for the money. Can he live with this?

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Full Cast & Crew

Actors and actresses

Mary McPhillip

Dan Gallagher

Katie Madden

Frankie McPhillip

Mrs. McPhillip

Bartly Mulholland

Tommy Connor

Peter Mulligan

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avatar van yeyo


  • 6308 messages
  • 4463 votes

An odd one out from John Ford, but a masterpiece nonetheless. The Informer while retaining the intimate atmosphere and intense personal relationships of his later work, differs in some significant ways due to the obvious influence of German Expressionism. The compositions and use of shadows are very reminiscent of Pabst, Murnau and especially Fritz Lang's M. In addition to the grim cinematography, the film is also the opposite of Ford's romanticized Ireland stories, How Green Was My Valley and The Quiet Man in terms of space and character development. The setting consists not of picturesque fields, but of misty alleys and the characters are not noble hard workers, but distrustful paupers. This brings us to a final fundamental difference with Ford's oeuvre, namely the choice of the main character. Gypo Nolan is not a heroic idealist à la Abe Lincoln or Wyatt Earp, but a coward with hands like coal shovels and an empty upstairs room. It's baffling how he does everything he can to be loved, but resolves every conflict with muscle power. Yet in the end it is difficult not to feel sorry for this tragic misfit.

A striking similarity with Ford's other work is the use of Christian symbolism. The story clearly runs parallel to the betrayal of Judas and the theme of forgiveness is also central. Especially the scene where Gypo is forgiven by a kind of 'Madonna' is very beautiful and meaningful.

The Informer was clearly a big inspiration for Abel Ferrara, another favorite filmmaker of mine. The last scene, for example, is very similar to The Bad Lieutenant.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original

avatar van clubsport


  • 3207 messages
  • 6585 votes

The atmosphere is there, but this film had little interest in me, the stupidity of the character started to irritate me more and more as the film progressed.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original