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Author Topic: Film-Noir Discussion/DVD Review Thread  (Read 366448 times)
cigar joe
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« Reply #720 on: March 23, 2011, 08:20:36 PM »

This Gun For Hire (1942) Directed by Frank Tuttle, with Veronica Lake, Robert Preston, Laird Cregar, and Alan Ladd. This one was hit & miss, the two opening sequences with hit man Alan Ladd (in his debut) are excellent the boarding house intro & his first hit (you won't recognize him at first), it goes down from there, Veronica Lake provides the love interest (I don't quite get the big attraction with Lake, maybe its just me but but I'd rather bend Marie Windsor, Gloria Graham, Jean Peters, Jane Greer, or Rita Hayworth over the table in any order first before her, lol ), and over the top heavy Laird Cregar as sleazy chemical plant owner by day/night club owner by night is entertaining. Robert Preston seems to be phoning it in and the patriotic anti Jap War theme comes off very dated & heavy handed nowadays.  6.5/10

and some Fractured Features....

Caught (1949) Director: Max Ophüls with James Mason, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Ryan, this came on TCM at an inopportune time,  I was half asleep and nodding off while watching this but from what I remember it looked good, and Barbara Bel Geddes seemed to have her tits/and erect nipples practically on display in a number of shots, will need another viewing while awake to make sure I wasn't dreaming, luckily its on streaming video on Netflix, will report back. Azn

They Live By Night (1949) Saw the middle of this one when I came home from work, then had to go pickup the wife in a snowstorm, what I saw also looked good. Dir. Nicholas Ray. Farley Granger, Cathy O'Donnell, Howard da Silva, Jay C. Flippen, and Helen Craig. Again will have to rerun it.

Gun Crazy (1950) Dir. Joseph H. Lewis. with Peggy Cummins, John Dall, Berry Kroeger, Morris Carnovsky, Anabel Shaw, Harry Lewis, Nedrick Young, Rusty (Russ) Tamblyn. Cummins is femme fatale who leads gun-crazy Dall in a Bonnie & Clyde like spree. Seen the beginning and the end never the whole thing through, caught the end again today after I picked up the wife & got back home.

« Last Edit: March 24, 2011, 06:38:33 AM by cigar joe » Logged

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« Reply #721 on: March 24, 2011, 08:25:18 AM »

Caught (1949) Director: Max Ophüls with James Mason, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Ryan, this came on TCM at an inopportune time,  I was half asleep and nodding off while watching this but from what I remember it looked good, and Barbara Bel Geddes seemed to have her tits/and erect nipples practically on display in a number of shots, will need another viewing while awake to make sure I wasn't dreaming, luckily its on streaming video on Netflix, will report back. Azn
This is OK. Ryan is great, Mason better-than-good, BBG rather gormless, but that's pretty much what the role requires. Don't know why this is considered a noir, though--there's no crime. More of an overheated mellodrama.

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« Reply #722 on: March 26, 2011, 01:08:18 AM »

Dementia - Daughter of Horror (1955) I thought I was in for some cheap budgeted horror foray, instead this is a quintessential noir. Even though the nightmare element is pervading, the techniques of the movie remind me more of noir flicks than horror ones. What i can't digest of this movie is the fact that all the women are below-average, expecially the protagonist. Had she been more appetizing I could have given this movie 9\10 (because, of course, they can say in the blurbs on the cover that this compares with Un chien andalou: but it doesn't have the force (and the irony) of Bunuel's classic). But to make a cheap budgeted movie with those results makes it a solid 8\10. 

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« Reply #723 on: March 26, 2011, 02:27:09 AM »

Dementia - Daughter of Horror (1955) I thought I was in for some cheap budgeted horror foray, instead this is a quintessential noir. Even though the nightmare element is pervading, the techniques of the movie remind me more of noir flicks than horror ones. What i can't digest of this movie is the fact that all the women are below-average, expecially the protagonist. Had she been more appetizing I could have given this movie 9\10 (because, of course, they can say in the blurbs on the cover that this compares with Un chien andalou: but it doesn't have the force (and the irony) of Bunuel's classic). But to make a cheap budgeted movie with those results makes it a solid 8\10. 

I don't think I've ever heard of it. I'll have to check it out.
I always thought "Carnival Of Souls" was noir-ish also.

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« Reply #724 on: March 26, 2011, 07:40:20 PM »

Possessed (1947) Dir. Curtis Bernhardt with Joan Crawford, Van Heflin, Raymond Massey, and Geraldine Brooks.  A demented Joan Crawford walks the streets of LA looking for David, collapses in Lew's Cafe, and wakes up in a mental ward. Flashbacks reveal the sorry tale. 5/10

Hefiln is good at any rate.

A real meller not my cup of tea type of Film Noir. BTW Crawford always to me anyway, gave me the impression even before tell tale flick "Mommy Dearest", that her elevator never went all the way to the top, like she had a screw loose and was on the verge loosing it in all of her films that I've seen,  Cool

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« Reply #725 on: March 27, 2011, 04:25:57 AM »

The Damned Don't Cry (1950) Director Vincent Sherman, with Joan Crawford. Caught this one near the end she "plays a woman who becomes discontented with her marriage and boring life and sets out to make a better living for herself no matter the cost. She loses her young child in an accident. Her infatuation with dangerous men ultimately leads her into equally dangerous situations". This one was better than the last but I missed all of the melodrama at the beginning, lol. It ended as a sort of riff on the Bugsy Siegel story with Joan playing a mobsters girlfriend who is encouraged to "fraternize" with the Bugsy character to rat on what's going on to the mobster. Still with Crawford in it and from what the beginning sounds like I can only rate it at best a 6/10.

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« Reply #726 on: March 27, 2011, 10:21:18 AM »

The Damned Don't Cry (1950) Director Vincent Sherman, with Joan Crawford. Caught this one near the end she "plays a woman who becomes discontented with her marriage and boring life and sets out to make a better living for herself no matter the cost. She loses her young child in an accident. Her infatuation with dangerous men ultimately leads her into equally dangerous situations". This one was better than the last but I missed all of the melodrama at the beginning, lol. It ended as a sort of riff on the Bugsy Siegel story with Joan playing a mobsters girlfriend who is encouraged to "fraternize" with the Bugsy character to rat on what's going on to the mobster. Still with Crawford in it and from what the beginning sounds like I can only rate it at best a 6/10.
You're selling this one short. It's my favorite of the 40s-50s Crawfords (not counting the non-noir Daisy Kenyon): a tough-as-nails tale that really moves. The summary that you quote above takes place in about the first 5 minutes of the film; then we get Joan clawing her way to the top over the bodies (metaphorically speaking) of Kent Smith, David Brian, and finally a very dashing Steve Cochran. This is one of the best examples there is of the Warner formula (cheap, fast, and tough).

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« Reply #727 on: March 27, 2011, 06:03:05 PM »

You're selling this one short. It's my favorite of the 40s-50s Crawfords (not counting the non-noir Daisy Kenyon): a tough-as-nails tale that really moves. The summary that you quote above takes place in about the first 5 minutes of the film; then we get Joan clawing her way to the top over the bodies (metaphorically speaking) of Kent Smith, David Brian, and finally a very dashing Steve Cochran. This is one of the best examples there is of the Warner formula (cheap, fast, and tough).

Fair enough. Like I said I only saw the last 30 minutes, and was rating it based on my dislike of Crawford, I'll give it another go if it pops up again, you bet.

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« Reply #728 on: April 01, 2011, 08:51:42 AM »

Body and Soul (1947) I see this is listed as noir at IMDB but of course it doesn't belong in that category. This is just a melodrama about the usual movie boxer, that with moral scruples which exist only in hollywood. This is totally predicable, Anne Revere is heavy as lead, Garfield looks older than his father, Lilli Palmer looks and acts like a model for Barbie. I wonder why the boxer as a sob as portrayed in the famous Ring Lardner short story could find only the Kirk Douglas movie based on it a response.  5\10

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« Reply #729 on: April 02, 2011, 08:39:09 PM »

Whirlpool (1949) Director: Otto Preminger, with Gene Tierney,as Ann Sutton, Richard Conte, as Dr. William 'Bill' Sutton, José Ferrer as hypnotist David Korvo and Charles Bickford as Lt. James Colton. Tierney is beautiful in this. She plays a wealthy, prominent, closet kleptomaniac who is assisted by Ferrer out of a jam that would cause unwelcome publicity for her psychiatrist husband (Conte) and then falls under his suggestive powers, which ends with a frame up for a murder. These types of high society based noirs are usually not quite as fun for me as their seedier counterparts but this one is great. The wife gave this one high marks 9/10.

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« Reply #730 on: April 03, 2011, 11:23:09 AM »

Whirlpool (1949) Director: Otto Preminger, with Gene Tierney,as Ann Sutton, Richard Conte, as Dr. William 'Bill' Sutton, José Ferrer as hypnotist David Korvo and Charles Bickford as Lt. James Colton. Tierney is beautiful in this. She plays a wealthy, prominent, closet kleptomaniac who is assisted by Ferrer out of a jam that would cause unwelcome publicity for her psychiatrist husband (Conte) and then falls under his suggestive powers, which ends with a frame up for a murder. These types of high society based noirs are usually not quite as fun for me as their seedier counterparts but this one is great. The wife gave this one high marks 9/10.
The self-hypnotism at the end took it out of the realm of noir (for me at least) and into science fiction. I liked Ferrer's performance throughout, though: a very smooth-talking psycho.

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« Reply #731 on: April 04, 2011, 05:36:08 PM »

Union Station (1950) Director: Rudolph Maté, with William Holden, Barry Fitzgerald, Nancy Olson, Lyle Bettger, caught this on Netflix another WOW!!!. The story of this noir begins with Olson on a train back to Chicago. She watches as a speeding car races the train to the station on a parallel highway. Two men get out, board the train, and the car speeds away. The men inexplicably sit apart from each other and Olson notices that as one stows away his suitcase in the overhead rack that he's wearing a shoulder holster. She tells the conductor who wires ahead to the Lieutenant (Holden) in charge of security at Union Station. We soon find out that its a kidnap and ransom caper. Barry Fitzgerald plays his memorable stock Irish police commander, and Lyle Bettger is a great villain.

This film abounds in atmosphere and absolutely great, great, location shots, not only does Union Station play a prominent part, but we also get extended period Chicago Elevated shots, the Chicago stockyards, and the climax in the Chicago Tunnel Company RR tunnels (http://users.ameritech.net/chicagotunnel/tunnel1.htmlAfro Afro Afro 10/10 on the locations alone.

Streaming on Netflix

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« Reply #732 on: April 05, 2011, 06:04:13 AM »

Five Miles to Midnight (1962) dir by Anatole Litvak, with Sophia Loren, Athony Perkins, Gig Young, and Jean-Pierre Aumont, listed as a Crime Drama, but very noir-ish. Lisa (Loren) playing an unsatisfied Italian woman, has a fight with her American husband Robert (Perkins) in a Paris night club. He leaves the next day for a business trip and Lisa says she does not want to see him again. She is with newspaperman Alan Stewart (Aumont) that evening when she learns Robert's plane has crashed with no survivors. Waking from sedation after the funeral, Lisa finds Robert in their flat, injured but alive. He was thrown clear of the crash by a lucky twist of fate. He now wants to collect on the $120,000 insurance policy that he took out at the airport.  Lisa reluctantly goes along with the scheme, once  she collects the money and turns it over to him, she thinks she will finally be rid of him.

Now I was just half paying attention to this (it was on TCM) and it has various relationship angles that went over my head and I wasn't hooked until Loren brutally deals with David, it would be definitely worth another view. I'd say it was a Neo-Noir and a 6.5-7/10 from what I caught of it, Loren looks great as always!

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« Reply #733 on: April 05, 2011, 09:28:53 AM »

Five Miles to Midnight (1962) dir by Anatole Litvak, with Sophia Loren, Athony Perkins, Gig Young, and Jean-Pierre Aumont, listed as a Crime Drama, but very noir-ish. Lisa (Loren) playing an unsatisfied Italian woman, has a fight with her American husband Robert (Perkins) in a Paris night club. He leaves the next day for a business trip and Lisa says she does not want to see him again. She is with newspaperman Alan Stewart (Aumont) that evening when she learns Robert's plane has crashed with no survivors. Waking from sedation after the funeral, Lisa finds Robert in their flat, injured but alive. He was thrown clear of the crash by a lucky twist of fate. He now wants to collect on the $120,000 insurance policy that he took out at the airport.  Lisa reluctantly goes along with the scheme, once  she collects the money and turns it over to him, she thinks she will finally be rid of him.

Now I was just half paying attention to this (it was on TCM) and it has various relationship angles that went over my head and I wasn't hooked until Loren brutally deals with David, it would be definitely worth another view. I'd say it was a Neo-Noir and a 6.5-7/10 from what I caught of it, Loren looks great as always!


I'm intrigued by the "lucky twist of fate" which can save you from an airplane crash. Roll Eyes

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« Reply #734 on: April 05, 2011, 10:52:20 AM »

I'm intrigued by the "lucky twist of fate" which can save you from an airplane crash. Roll Eyes


<spoilers>

He was blow out the cargo door at impact.

anyway today....

Dark City(1950) Dir by William Dieterle

Bad luck begets bad blood when desperate GI Arthur Winant (Don DeFore) gets taken by grifter Danny Haley (Charlton Heston) and his cronies and hangs himself, launching unseen brother Sidney (Mike Mazurki) on a table-turning vendetta against which Haley alone has a shadow of a chance. With chanteuse girlfriend Fran Garland (Lizabeth Scott) as his beacon, the hunted sets out to uncover his hunter -- and reckons with his own misdeeds along the way. Just a bit too draggy, with a lot of rear projected processed shots, Heston's debut film also has Jack Webb and Harry Morgan as a punch drunk flunky. 6.5/10

« Last Edit: April 05, 2011, 10:55:47 AM by cigar joe » Logged

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