Catching up with all the classics on TCM. Maltese Falcon, Double Indemnity, Sunset Blvd. , Murder My Sweet, Dark Passage. I'm 25, but find these films so great. They had plots, and intrigue, and great lighting. Makes all this new shit seem so lame.
Good for you!
When you're feeling like you want to see something great and crazy, try "Kiss Me Deadly," "The Naked Kiss" or "Shock Corridor." Lurid late noirs with wild plots and lots of intrigue.
The opening scene before the credits in "The Naked Kiss" still packs a punch 50 years later. Don't read about it before you watch it!
I'm with you OP.
Costco had a 10 movie, DVD compilation set for $19 last week and again, another 10 film collection I picked up this morning.
If you have a Costco in your hood, might want to check it out.
Don't forget "Detour"
Or anything directed by Fritz Lang
Film noir is my favourite genre too OP, I'm 39. I like watching them when I'm home alone. Those no good dames and those tough as nails detectives draw me in every time.
I love them!! One of my favorite lines from a film noir whose title I can't recall, was spoken by Lisabeth Scott. .. "A girl like me doesn't need much to get by. Just stockings and cigarets."
Didn't she also say, "I don't go to church. Kneeling bags my nylons."
Bwahahahaha!! .. Love it!!
Gloria Grahame in THE BIG HEAT.
I do agree they're fun. Double Indemnity has a clever plot - since updated for Body Heat - but some of the dialogue in DI is laughable ...not to mention that no one IRL has ever talked in the clipped, rapid-fire way that Fred MacMurray does.
If you need to always have real life, stay out of the theaters.
So many great movies to watch. The plot for the movie of [italic]the Big Sleep[/italic] doesn't make much sense, but it has some great scenes, particularly with Dorothy Malone and Martha Vickers.
James Cagney is very intense in [italic]White Heat[/italic] and it has that classic ending.
"Born To Be Bad" , Starring the still alive, Joan Fontaine. Causing havoc in everyone's lives, when she hits town ( San Francisco ). Loving the bad boy, but wanting the rich guy, for his money. Don't we all ? Robert Ryan's great line to her 'I love you so much. Too bad I don't like you'
[RE8] So disturbing when Lee Marvin throws the hot coffee in Grahame's face.
So freaky that secondary character actors like Marvin , & Charles Bronson , would go on to become huge A - list stars in the 60's & 70's.
The term, Film Noir is entirely racist and a produce of white domination. As a result, I'm not going to pay my taxes.
I love that bit in [italic]the Big Heat[/italic] when Gloria Grahame imitates a prancing dog to make fun of the men kissing up to the top dog. I can't remember what he says, but it's something like "she's a nice girl, but you shouldn't let her drink."
The Sunset Boulevard qualify as film
We had FACES then! And lots of drink.
Yes, R17. It bled into so many other genres. R6, that was Jan Sterling in ACE IN THE HOLE aka THE BIG CARNIVALm another Billy Wilder film.
A recent favorite for me is BORN TO KILL with Claire Trevor and Lawrence Tierney. Trevor is magnificent and Tierney is a piece of wood but can at least do menace well enough. And they do have great chemistry. And lots of fun people in the small roles. It's a nasty little film.
Now, dear OP, if you can just quit equating your age with the capacity to enjoy popular art and entertainment from the not-so-distant past, you'll feel so much better about being a normal person. And unlike most of your cohort, you'll be fun company!
BUT in the meantime - they are great, aren't they? Try ASPHALT JUNGLE for some Huston, and of course THE MALTESE FALCON for a little more. Do the early Bogart/Bacall stuff, at least with THE BIG SLEEP. And see if you like THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE. Also, IN A LONELY PLACE is great, and if you've never done the nouveau noir in-color CHINATOWN (surely you already have), it's a wonderful update. And, last, watch TOUCH OF EVIL for the Welles' insane brilliance. Great fun.
OUT OF THE PAST with one of my favorite femme fatales, Kathie Moffat, played by Jane Greer.
Besides those mentioned, I'd also recommend Pickup on South Street.
Just rewatched The Big Heat and LOVED Gloria all over again! She made that quip as she was Lee Marvin's girl friend. [Oh, baby, deep in side of me.] And Jeanette Nolan, so perfectly hateable, killed in a mink coat by a woman in a mink coat. Loved the ex-army buddies and all their hunkability brought in for backup.
A delicious movie.
Scarlett Street and Nightmare Alley are up there, too.
And, that boys and girls, is what a GEEK actually GEEKS.
"Quicksand" with Micky Rooney & Barbara Bates ( Phoebe, the wanna be Eve, at the end of " All About Eve"). Set in Santa Monica, at the old Ocean Park amusement pier, and ending on the famous Santa Monica Pier ( where Route 66 ends). Sad fact - Bates was suicidal for years, once attempting to slash her wrists, lost her career, and finally succeeded by locking herself in her garage , with the engine running. She was only 43.
"Union Station" - William Holden's 1st film after " Sunset Blvd.", again with Nancy Olsen. Not a great film, but good, with lots of 1950 L.A., including Pasadena, and Griffith Park.
That freaky wrestler, Mike Mazurki, is very funny in " Murder My Sweet". 6' 5" tall, he had that gravelly voice from being punched in the Adams apple, when he was wrestling. I love how he just tosses everyone around in the film.
I'm with you R9. The dialogue in DI at times is so ripe it's laughable.
Check out the films of Henri-Georges Clouzot, starting with "Quai des Orfèvres".
RE 29 - we're talking about American film noir here. you foreigners keep your own films, back in your own countries.
R30, what an ignorant, unhelpful, jingoistic post ...begone, you phony patriot.
And R29, thanks for the Clouzot recommendation!
R30, you had yet to contribute at all, other than to insult r29 who made an excellent contribution to this thread, so why don't you go back to your basement dwelling and let the grown ups talk.
Don't forget Joan Crawford in Possessed. Very good movie.
The opening sequence to Mildred Pierce is one of the greatest uses of film noir with the lighting, shadows and off kilter shots. It's an interesting movie that starts out as Noir then switches to a typical woman's melodrama. But basically so much of film noir is just the woman's melodrama tilted to men.
[quote]Try ASPHALT JUNGLE
Great movie - I watched it the other night on TCM - the ending always chokes me up.
I love Film Noir - even when it's bad, it's still worth watching (usually)...
[quote]t's an interesting movie that starts out as Noir then switches to a typical woman's melodrama.
Agree. I'd add that this seems typical of a lot of Warners product. Noir -- or the style of Noir --was the studio trademark through much of the 1940s.
Marnie - it's my favourite Hitchcock. Sean Connery is a twisted control freak, Tippi Hedren is a white collar criminal. The whole thing is beautifully lit and styled, the backstory is suitably grotesque, love it.
The strange case of Martha Ivers. Barbara Stanwick, Lizabeth Scott and Kirk Douglas
You Tube is an absolute treasure trove when it comes to old movies. I'm talking movies from the 30's & 40's. Incredible finds.
I don't know if purists consider "Niagara" a film noir though the plot and its twists probably qualify. Anyway it's amusing to see Marilyn playing a villain for once.
Just to rile up r30 who probably think Americans first coined the expression "film noir", I'll add my voice to the Clouzot vote. And to stretch it further I'd add that "Diabolique" extends the film noir premise to the horror genre.
Shoot the Piano Player--so what if it's French? It's the best!
Two words: Steve Hayes (a/k/a Tired Old Queen At The Movies)
He features many noir films among the dozens of TOQ videos at You Tube.
I recommend Laura. It's film noir with a candy coating: glamorous, witty, romantic, beautiful, entertaining, but still down and dirty.
TCM is a gold mine of noir. I saw one a few weeks back with Joan Bennett and James Mason that was an A+ for atmosphere. When movies today are clearly made for children and/or retards, it's a pleasure to see films made for adults (even in an era of heavy censorship).
How about Elevator to the Gallows, or Ascenseur Pour l'Echafaud as the original French title goes? If only for the Miles Davis classic soundtrack.
That's THE RECKLESS MOMENT, R45. Remade as THE DEEP END with Tilda Swinton.
Phantom Lady from 1944 directed by Robert Siodmak is one of my favorites.
The original "D.O.A." is one of the greatest film noirs ever.
I have mixed feelings about film noir. I have liked some of them, and have watched most in this thread. But something about them is depressing, too.
On a related note, I find melodramas completely depressing and am unable to watch them.
[RE50] You sound like a real party !!!
Well, R51, narcissists have trouble with things that don't reaffirm their self-esteem and make them feel brilliant and happy and like they're the center of the universe.
I don't need happy, R52 and I am definitely not a narcissist. I like serious drama, but there is something depressing about some of Film Noir, and definitely old melodramas.
Even though it probably doesn't count as classic noir, I still love L.A. Confidential
OMG - YES, film noir is depressing. There's a reason. A lot of the films were reactions , post WW 2, to the cynicism, and yes, depression, of the war, it's killing, lives shattered. Don't watch them then. "Mary Poppins" is a good alternative.
Not a reaction to WWII & the cynicism, killing, but spouting out more of it in rigid little stories for a popular audience, without mentioning the real drama and truth and cynicism in society and the world, and in fact avoiding that reality. Hitler isn't the evil one, just some tough dames in tight sweaters. Full of corny music and dialogue.
That's odd, R53. I love good melodrama (like James M. Cain) the same way I love good comedy (like Oscar Wilde) -- they both intrigue my mind & keep me fascinated. Depressing is something like "Old Yeller", where the dog dies, & I can't bear to think about it, much less see it again.
[RE56] OK professor , we got it . I think your wrong, but being verbose is what you do I guess.
[quote]I think your wrong, but being verbose is what you do I guess.
R56 also does apostrophes correctly. I don't share his sentiments, but do appreciate his punctuation.
Has anybody mentioned the great "Out of the Past" starring Robert Mitchum with Kirk Douglas as the bad guy? I call it the battle of the cleft chins...(with Jane Greer, fabulous as the exotic love interest.) It was directed by French born Jacques Tourneur, although I guess he mainly worked in American films.
What's the movie where Richard Widmark pushes the old lady in a wheelchair down a flight of stairs?
"Old Mother Riley Meets the Vampire"
Not to be missed is "To Have and Have Not"
Lauren Bacall's first film and it made her a star.
The chemistry between Bogart (45) and Bacall (19) is off the fucking charts.
"Dark Passage" - Bogart's great, as usual, it's got Bacall, set in San Fran, and Agnes Moorehead fantastic as a bitchy old maid ( of course). I won't give away what she does at the end.
One of my faves - "I Walk Alone" . You get prime Burt Lancaster & Kirk Douglas, plus divine Lizabeth Scott. Story's good. Liz should have been a huge star.
If your talking Burt Lancaster, his first film, " The Killers" is a noir classic. With Ava Gardner. 2 beautiful faces, in b&w, suspense, it's got it all !
I enjoy a lot of Film Noir, but (even more than Westerns) it is the Classic Movie genre that is safe for straight guys.
I WAKE UP SCREAMING is an excellent early noir (1941) that hasn't been mentioned...ditto FALLEN ANGEL (1945).
Once thought to be lost, and only recent re-discovered is the poverty-row BLONDE ICE (1948) with Leslie Brooks as a cold blooded society columnist on a killing spree is a tantalizing noir that has a cop-out ending, but until then is lots of dark, juicy fun. Worth searching out.
I wonder why Bette Davis didn't do any film noir. Her home studio Warner Brothers was the king of noir and she would have been a natural in the genre, yet for whatever reasons didn't do it.
R71, I know what you mean, but Davis' appearances in THE LETTER, PETRIFIED FOREST, DECEPTION and BEYOND THE FOREST all qualify as film noir outings.
BEYOND THE FOREST especially is a tickler, though (the others being rather hot). It includes Bettes' peritonitis-death-from-self-abortion-by-falling-down-a-hill that she called the longest death scene in film history.
The Third Man - from the moment Joseph Cotton arrives in postwar Vienna to the end when Alida Valli walks down the street.
Bette Davis actually did a film noir for Warner, or rather a noir melodrama: DEAD RINGER directed by her 'Now Voyager' co-star Paul Henreid. As in 'A Stolen Life' she plays twins, and once more the jealous twin takes the place of the dead one... Only this time she will REALLY wish she hadn't!
At times the movie is more camp melodrama than film noir but is worth checking out, not just for two Bette Davis for the price of one, but also the terrific score by Andre Previn.
"I enjoy a lot of Film Noir, but (even more than Westerns) it is the Classic Movie genre that is safe for straight guys."
What does that have to do with the price of tea in China? Some vague feeling that you can't like it because straight guys can "safely" do the same? I'm really missing the point here...
I disagree R74 with calling DEAD RINGER a noir. It's more accurately a 'gran dame guignol'.
Poor old Lizabeth Scott, her career really dried up after she was busted by Confidential as a hooker-using lesbian.
She was, for me, the ultimate Noir Queen.
No, r75 - I was just making an observation.
Lizabeth Scott is still alive.
You have a point, R70. An idiotic one, but a point.
R80 attempts to slam someone who doesn't deserve it by quoting a non-noir character. How very dull.
And she's too short for the gesture, in any event. But she IS a cunt.
Recent scary Lizabeth Scott, in March 2010.
She's 91 now, so actually it's rather amazing she's using this look and still nearly resembling herself. Those eyebrows appear like that in most recent photos, though. ( ! )
Love film noir too, most of the ones mentioned here. My favourite is the very odd and atmospheric "Angel Face" with Robert Mitchum and Jean Simmons.
r83 I love ANGEL FACE.
A great noir melodrama is NO MAN OF HER OWN with Barbara Stanwyck. Based on a Cornell Woolrich story it could have been easily remade well and some idiot decided to turn it into a Ricki Lake comedy, MRS. WINTERBOURNE.
Another great Stanwyck is THE FILE ON THELMA JORDON, especially for the tense post-crime clean up scene.
An earlier poster mentioned Robert Siodmak's PHANTOM LADY. He also did THE FILE ON THELMA JORDON, THE KILLERS, CRISS CROSS and the non-noir classic suspense film, THE SPIRAL STAIRCASE. I'll always love him for COBRA WOMAN.
I had no idea Barbara Stanwyck made so many Noir films. Crime of Passion, Witness to Murder, and on and on. Good stuff. I love You Tube.
R84, "Phantom Lady" is also based on a book by Cornell Woolrich, published under his pseudonym William Irish.
Lizabeth Scott back in the day.
Never married, no kids.
Any lesbians out there have any good stories?
When was Sunset Blvd. on? I've been waiting to see it.
Another good little noir is Pushover from 1954. Fred MacMurray as a cop who's tempted to go to the other side of the law when he and his partner are assigned to surveil Kim Novak (in her debut), girlfriend of a wanted bank robber on the lam. He falls for Novak and the two of them plot to kill the boyfriend and run off with his loot. The movie has a quintessential film noir line when Novak tells MacMurray "Money isn't dirty, just people."
Not a pure noir, but the wonderful "Sudden Fear" (1952)with Joan Crawford, Gloria Graham, and Jack Palance is irresistible for repeated viewings. The score by Elmer Bernstein is brilliant too.
"I know a way. I know a way. I know a way. I know a way...."
[RE90] "Sudden Fear" is excellent. Great scene when Palance & Grahame are talking, while Joan is hiding in the closet.
I don't know what to say about #82's pic. It's like she has the same hair, from 1946, on a frightining 91 year old face . Why not change the hairstyle, so we're not thinking of the face, back then ? Love her though - no one can beat that sexy, sultry voice.
[quote]Poor old Lizabeth Scott, her career really dried up after she was busted by Confidential as a hooker-using lesbian. She was, for me, the ultimate Noir Queen.
R77, I knew Scott was gay, I didn't know about "Confidential" and the hookers.
Any other interesting "Confidential" stories? \t
R53, [italic]L.A. Confidential[/italic] counts as neo-noir, as does [italic]the Usual Suspects[/italic]. They both have complicated plots and lots of night scenes. There are more elements to consider than just those two, but those two will show up on any neo-noir list.
Do you guys think [italic]La4er Cake[/italic] counts as neo-noir? Despite the dark plot, it's mostly shot in daylight.
Can a Noir be Technicolor?
I'm thinking of DESERT FURY.
"Leave Her to Heaven" is a color noir. A classic.
"Stranger on the Third Floor" with Peter Lorre is one I like. It was released in 1940 and Robert Osborne on TCM said something about it being one of the earliest film noirs, if not the first. I wouldn't know, but it's an interesting little movie. The dream sequence is pretty intense for such a low-budget film. YouTube only has the Spanish language version.
 According to the Confidential article, Lizabeth was pretty open about her sexuality in Hwood (going to lesbian bars, refusing to beard, told a columnist she wore men's pyjamas and cologne, known to hang around with other lesbians including Marlene Dietrich's ex Frede) and the fact she was caught red-handed when the journo rang the phone number listed for her in the call girls 'little black book' was just the icing on the cake.
Sad and disappointing that she never came out publicly or speaks about her sexuality or the Confidential thing ever. It's such a pink elephant in every interview with her. I'm sure she has such a fascinating story to tell of being a lesbian in 40's Hollywood. Maybe she will speak out about it or write a bio before she passes on, I certainly hope that she does!
To anyone who has not seen 'Sudden Fear,' I recommend you watch it immediately if you are interested in film noir. It is a very suspenseful and great film. Even if you are not a Joan Crawford fan, you'll like it. Full movie at link.
OMG, Night of the Hunter with Gish is superb.
Leaning on the everlasting arm...
An obscure & largely forgotten film, but one that is really entertaining in its own uniquely-weird way, is MIRAGE (1965) ...directed by Edward Dmytryk (THE CAINE MUTINY). In MIRAGE, Gregory Peck is an amnesiac whose life is in danger, but he doesn't know why ...stellar cast also includes Diane Baker, Walter Matthau, George Kennedy, Kevin McCarthy & Jack Weston. Wonderfully-atmospheric b&w cinematography, a veritable time capsule of '60s Manhattan. Screenplay by Peter Stone (CHARADE; ARABESQUE; the first writer to win a Tony, an Oscar & an Emmy). Outstanding jazzy score by Quincy Jones.
The film was recently re-released on a very nice-looking DVD, well worth searching out. I've watched it many times & still enjoy its deeply-strange vibe.
I just watched Double Indemnity again. Movies of any genre, not just film noir, don't get better than that.
Film noir is not called that because of scenes filmed at night. It is atmospheric, but there is a desperation about the film, someone falling against his/her better judgment, being betrayed and typically an unhappy ending even if Hollywood slapped a bit of hope on at the end of films. James M. Cain is the king of film noir. It's getting mixed up with someone bad and being pulled down by them to a nasty end. That's the noir.
Postman Always Rings Twice, both the novel and the 1946 version, are quintessential noir. Even if the movie has a lot of MGM gloss, but Garfied, Lana Turner and Hume Cronyn all deliver strong performances. A shame MGM didn't make more of those type of films as Turner was perfect for Noir.
I like those old movies because they show a time when everyone at least tried to appear dignified in dress and make-up. Even if you lived on skid row, you tried to do something with your hair (like the Stevie Wonder song "... her clothes are worn, but never are they dirty"). Men wore hats.
Now everyone tries to look hip hop or slutty. Or sloppy-fat (people of WalMart).