Following vicious gang leader “Pinky” (Attenborough) as he tries to cover up the murder of his former best friend, “Brighton Rock” exposes the seedy underside of the resort. Forced into a corner by the trail of evidence he’s left behind and by the machinations of rival mobster Colleoni (Charles Goldner), Pinky has to marry naïve waitress Rose (Marsh) in order to keep her from testifying against him.
Set in a grimy inter-war Brighton of cheap boarding houses, rumpled suits, Brylcream, and raucous pubs, “Brighton Rock” is a stunning reworking of Greene’s guilt-laden novel for the screen. For American audiences the film was re-titled “Young Scarface”, but that’s a complete misnomer. Poised between a crime movie and a torrid study of Pinky’s doom-laden psychosis, this quintessentially British film descends into a homegrown world of damnation and torment.