Adapted from the first of Walter Mosley’s popular Easy Rawlins detective novels, this stylish, intelligent neo-noir from acclaimed director Carl Franklin (One False Move) stars Denzel Washington as a private investigator plying his trade in South Central Los Angeles after WWII.
“A fluid, persuasive piece of movie-making graced with considerable visual sophistication.” – Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
Ezekiel “Easy” Rawlins (Washington) is a decorated war hero who returns home to the segregation of post-war America. After being laid off from his job as an aircraft factory worker, Easy is forced to accept an under-the-table job locating a missing socialite (Jennifer Beals) involved with a mayoral candidate, and in the process, finds his true calling: as a private eye, albeit an unlicensed one. As he searches for the missing woman with the help of his best friend, a trigger-happy killer named Mouse (Don Cheadle), Easy becomes entangled in a complex and increasingly deadly case involving sex, corruption, racism, and of course, money. Caught between the white power elite and the black community of Central Avenue, Easy tries to solve a seemingly unsolvable mystery while also confronting the realities of post-WWII America. Filled with pointed social commentary, electrifying performances and shadowy noir atmosphere, Devil in a Blue Dress stands as one of the best (and most underrated) thrillers of the ‘90s. (Dir. by Carl Franklin, 1995, USA, 102 mins., Rated R)