The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973)
The bleak realism that The Friends of Eddie Coyle offers was unconventional for crime movies of this era, which helps explain some of the following this sleeper has had over the years. Robert Mitchum is (for once) perfectly cast as an ageing small-time criminal who goes to great lengths as an informer in order to avoid a prison sentence. Surrounding him are all kinds of morally dubious characters from both sides of the law, and the film's suggestion is that one perhaps isn't much better than the other. What The Friends of Eddie Coyle manages, at any rate, is to make them all into real human beings. Paul Monash produced and wrote the script from George V. Higgins novel. Among a solid cast, Richard Jordan is particularly good as a sleezy law enforcement agent.