This noir thriller is Otto Preminger's follow-up to his smash hit Laura, and while not quite up to the level of the previous film, it is still a pretty good, albeit convoluted, yarn. It all begins as a destitute press agent is… More This noir thriller is Otto Preminger's follow-up to his smash hit Laura, and while not quite up to the level of the previous film, it is still a pretty good, albeit convoluted, yarn. It all begins as a destitute press agent is unceremoniously booted off a cross-country bus for not paying his fare. He lands in the tiny seaside town of Walton. The press agent manages to con a fellow into letting him stay the night by promising to promote the career of a struggling medium. While he is there, he begins investigating the town eccentric, a wealthy young woman who lives secretively and by herself. He brings this information back to the medium who uses it to impress a seductive waitress who serves him at the local diner. Just before the bogus mind-reader and his partner leave for San Francisco they ask the press agent to go with them. As he has fallen for the waitress, he declines, and before they go, they pay him a hefty amount. Unfortunately, the waitress is a true gold digger and he is simply not wealthy enough. Desperate for her affections, the press agent tells her that he will marry the lonely eccentric, steal her fortune and then dump her. The waitress perks up at the suggestion so he goes to marry the other girl, and soon after the marriage, he jilts the girl. Unfortunately, the day after, the waitress is found dead. A retired detective redons his badge and begins an investigation that leads him to one of the waitress' sleazy lovers who points the finger at the press agent, who takes off with his new wife to San Francisco. There he takes all of her money from the bank and then begs her to await his return in their hotel room while he goes out to prove his innocence. Naturally he takes off. Meanwhile the wife ends up arrested for the crime. Fortunately for her, that is not the end of the story. Originally, the film was to be a major dramatic vehicle for long-time star Alice Faye, who had rejected numerous scripts before agreeing to play the wife. Unfortunately for her, as filming progressed, Preminger kept developing the part of Linda Darnell (the waitress) while gradually paring down Faye's. Faye, who believed some of her best work had been edited out, was so embittered by the experience that she immediately retired and didn't return to films for another 16 years.