Written June 12, 2009
John Huston's ASPHALT JUNGLE may seem a tad dated now, but it still packs a wallop being one of the first crime dramas (to come from MGM no less!) that attempted to deal with the genre in a realistic manner. Sterling Hayden heads an A-list roster of terrific character actors playing a group of desperate men trying to organize a jewelry heist that naturally goes horribly awry. Marilyn Monroe makes her first notable appearance as wealthy socialite's mistress and Jean Hagen plays damaged woman with a past clinging to Hayden till the bitter end. Taut direction and splendid location filming make the film a gripping forerunner of this type of raw depiction of the underbelly of the crime world.