Many consider James Cagney’s performance as Cody Jarrett in this powerful 1949 film noir as his finest portrayal.  The gritty crime drama follows the trials and tribulations of a half-mad gangster and his overly domineering mother. Jarrett’s mob is infiltrated by an undercover cop who succeeds in thwarting the gang’s criminal plans. The action-packed movie starred Cagney, Edmond O’Brien, Steve Cochrane and Virginia Mayo. The film’s most memorable scene has Cody Jarrett, gun in hand, standing atop a burning gas tank shouting out defiantly: “Made it, Ma. Top of the world.”

WhiteHeat poster 2  4-1-2013

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