Robert Wise's 1949 bleak and brutal film noir The Set-up is one of the best boxing films ever made. I was actually very surprised to learn that it was actually adapted from a narrative poem! Arts and Letters Daily now points me to a long essay on Joseph Moncure March, the poet and screenwriter who wrote it, which discusses this poem in great detail. It is also available on a very nice DVD with commentary by Martin Scorsese who speaks about its influence on his own work and also its very innovative narrative style - the story is told in (almost) real time. Actually the film is bookended by shots of a clock which actually shows the total time elapsed which is almost the same as the total length of the film itself. This is also one of Robert Ryan's greatest performances which makes you wish he had got more lead roles to play. In my opinion he was way ahead of actors and regular noir-leads like Robert Mitchum, Dana Andrews or Glenn Ford.