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  #431  
Old 4th November 2021, 11:08 PM
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Default Noir November #1

Laura (1944)

Excellent noir thriller about a murdered girl who turns out to be alive, but who is dead and who killed her?

Probably the best film of Vincent Price's career, everything about Laura positively oozes class. First rate direction from Otto Preminger, a killer script, and some great performances. Dana Andrews as the lovestruck detective excels. No wonder, if i gazed at that sumptuous painting of Laura (The fabulous Gene Tierney) i too would be in love.

Although its a script starved of action until the final scenes it remains enthralling as there are no real clues to the killers motives or indeed who they are, you have to work things out along with Andrews detective. Indeed as with some of the best noir's Laura is a film low on motive and reason but oh so very stylish in it's portrayal of obsession.

If i was to compare it to something from recent decades i may well suggest Twin Peaks , as everyone including the detective has an agenda and could be the murderer including Laura herself.

Highly recommended to all.
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  #432  
Old 4th November 2021, 11:10 PM
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I aim to watch a few Film noir's this November. It won't be anything like the October Horror Movie Marathon, but, i don't know about you, they seem a perfect choice of film for cold November evenings.
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  #433  
Old 9th November 2021, 11:00 PM
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Black Widow (1954)

Tremendous noirish thriller about the presumed suicide of a young writer that turns out to be murder.

A brilliant cast - Ginger Rogers, Van Heflin, Gene Tierney and George Raft, lead this excellent suspense film that, although directed by Nunnally Johnson, (someone i'm not really familiar with) could easily have been from the master himself, Alfred Hitchcock.

Excellent sets and costumes give the film a touch of glamour and a flawless script round this off as a true classic.

In a film with little humour at all its surprising that the last line is one of the funniest final lines in cinema history and leaves the viewer with a huge grin on their face as the final credits roll. Even funnier that it's spoken by gangster movie linchpin and all round movie hard man George Raft.

This is highly recommended and i can guarantee you it's far superior to the recent Marvel film of the same name.
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  #434  
Old 10th November 2021, 04:20 PM
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  #435  
Old 12th November 2021, 12:24 AM
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Inner Sanctum. 1948.

A man believing he has got away with murder at a quiet train station, takes up residency in a boarding house to escape the police, thing is the person who saw him stays at the same boarding house, a mischievous small boy.

Charles Russell plays the lead role as Harold who thinks he has accidentally performed the perfect crime until he is told the roads are blocked, and is taken to the boarding house where Mike played by Dale Belding also lives. We know who the killer is but between Russell and Belding second guessing each other is brilliant and can be quite tense as to see who will figure it out first. Lee Patrick plays the mother to Mike and provides some funny moments, looking for a father for her son which sends some guests running. The pace can be a bit quick and a bit slow but this was really good .

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  #436  
Old 30th November 2021, 10:39 PM
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Night and the City (1950)

Ending my short season of Noir November with Jules Dassin's tale of low life corruption, paranoia and impending doom, Night and the City sees Richard Widmark as a small time American nightclub tout who tries to worm his way into the wrestling rackets of post war London despite the attentions of vengeful club owner Francis Sullivan and racketeer Herbert Lom.

This is Noir at it's most gripping with an easy to follow none convoluted storyline and one of the best and toughest wrestling scenes on film even though it takes place out of the ring. There's a pervading atmosphere of dread throughout and you can tell from the midway point that things will become increasingly desperate for Widmark despite the attentions of loving Gene Tierney's nightclub singer.

Post war London looks spectacular as the action swiftly moves from Soho to Piccadilly Circus to the bombed out docklands as the film breathtakingly drives towards it's gut wrenching finale.

Highly recommended.
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  #437  
Old 20th May 2022, 10:04 PM
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The Reckless Moment (1949)

German Max Ophuls directs this 1940s film noir set in Los Angeles.

When her teenage daughter's disreputable and much older boyfriend is found dead, Lucia (Joan Bennett) using a boat hides the body to protect her family. But when one of the boyfriend's criminal associates, played by the Irish accented James Mason, arrives on the scene to blackmail Lucia, her life begins to quickly unravel.

Short, sharp and to the point. As far as noir cinema goes this is fairly simple viewing and mot in the least bit confusing. Less shadowy rainy streets than most noir cinema, Ophuls Californian locations are terrific as the excellent chain smoking Bennett holds the film together and is in practically every scene whilst Mason's blackmailer is almost quite charming. It's only when Mason's partner Nagel shows up that the film flips from melodrama to outright thriller.

I get the feeling The Reckless Moment because it's less noir cliched than most may well end up quite a memorable film with me.

Needless to say, the Indicator Blu-ray looks spot on.

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  #438  
Old 20th May 2022, 10:26 PM
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Joan Bennett in The Reckless Moment (1949)

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  #439  
Old 10th November 2022, 08:09 PM
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Deadly Game (1954)

Lloyd Bridges plays a man holidaying in Spain who runs into a former RAF buddy who asks him to drive his car back to England along with some documents as he has to urgently fly back. Very quickly Bridges ends up in a web of murder, drugs and microfilm smuggling and the police hot on his heels.

Shot in sunny Spain and murky London or Bray Studios to you and me this is a pacy British Noir second feature from Hammer Films that at a meagre 65 minutes certainly doesn't outstay it's welcome.

As well as bought in American star Bridges this features a whole bunch of Hammer regulars including Roger Delgado, Ferdy Mane and George Woodbridge.
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Old 24th November 2022, 05:45 PM
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The Unholy Four (1954)

William Sylvester stars as one of four men who went on a Portuguese fishing holiday but he never returned. Four years on he finally shows up to reveal he was drugged, attacked and left for dead...now he's out to find out which 'friend' left him for dead.

An intriguing little British Noir directed by Terence Fisher. It's gathers pace from the get go and has some beautiful little twists and turns as well as cold blooded murders to keep you engaged.

Golden age of Hollywood star Paulette Goddard was roped along in by Hammer and US distributor Robert Lippert to sell tickets across the pond. It should be noted that at no point does Goddard ever look like the way she's depicted on the poster below.
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