Jigsaw is a 1949 film noir made by Tower Pictures and distributed by United Artists. It was directed by Fletcher Markle and produced by Edward J. Danziger and Harry Lee Danziger from a screenplay by Vincent McConnor and Fletcher Markle from a story by John Roeburt.
This violent, dark film tells of tormented Police Lt. Leonard Diamond (Cornel Wilde), who is on a personal crusade to bring down sadistic gangster Mr. Brown (Richard Conte). He’s also dangerously obsessed with Brown’s girlfriend (Jean Wallace), his captive lover.
Why is Detective Diamond so involved with Brown’s girlfriend? Well… she’s pretty Jean Wallace.. but I think that’s about all she’s got going for her. Let’s face it. She’s a gun moll and kind of a ditz. Not to pick a pretty good film noir apart too much. It is the genre.
It sort of reminds me of what Dr. Laura said “If you help a damsel in distress, you end up with a distressed damsel”
A prosecuting attorney treats every homicide case as first degree murder and uses miniature replicas of human skulls to tally the death sentences that he garners. Then he himself is beset by the urge to murder.
An actor is killed during the performance of a play and critic Tony Woolrich (Dave O’Brien) undertakes to solve the crime. Claudia Moore (Kay Aldridge, in her last movie role), the girl he loves, is suspected, but when two more deaths occur, she is also threatened by the Phantom Killer.