Here’s a film noir that hits a whole heap of crazy, yet still manages to keep its feet on the ground. Director Anthony Mann delivers this mile a minute crime drama that whips you into a frenzy with it’s rapid fire action, suspense and thrills and spills. Love triangles, gangsters, hitmen, a twisted firestarter, roadblocks, man hunts, torture, fights, gun battles and inner monologues. This film has it all in it’s 79 minute runtime, sit back and strap yourself in for the ride. Continue reading “Raw Deal (1948) Prison Break, Pyromaniac Mobster, A Threesome & A Theremin!”
You know it’s gonna be a tough trip when even your own truck tries to ground and pound you!
Nick Garcos (Richard Conte) is a war veteran returning to the family home to see his jolly loving folks. Nick’s got gifts, his sweet girlfriend Polly is there and Pops and Mama are singing and smiling. The war had been tough but life is good and the smell of Mama’s cooking fills his heart, everything is perfect? STOP! Pull that needle right across the record…….
Continue reading “Thieves’ Highway (1949) Wages Of Fear With Apples For Nitroglycerine!”
I just had to go check, not long into the film, that Olivia de Havilland didn’t in fact have a twin! She had to, right? This is 1946, there is no way camera tricks are this advanced? It seems that, only in the last 10 or so years, they’ve been able to pull off the perfect effect of having the same person play doppelgangers. There always seemed to be a tell of sorts, eyes looking in the wrong place, maybe a slight haze around one of the characters where they have been added, always something that gave it away. Flash forward to the present and we have TV shows like Counterpart where we get two JK Simmons wander around flawlessly interacting with each other but how did they do it 72 years ago? Ok I know there are some a few tale tale signs but it’s really astonishing how they pulled it off so believably, most credit due I must add to Olivia de Havilland’s skillful acting talent. Continue reading “The Dark Mirror (1946) Double Trouble & Psychological Rorschach Tests”
Had no idea this Fritz Lang World War 2 film, Hangmen Also Die was based on Operation Anthropoid when I went in. Having a keen interest in military history I knew of the deadly task at hand. Interestingly the BBC have a series running at the moment investigating the training of SOE’s (Special Operations Executive) that specialised in espionage, sabotage and reconnaissance. Two SOE officers excelled the special training in the UK, one Czech the other Slovak, Jozef Gabčík and Jan Kubiš. Both assigned with the task of being dropped back into their Nazi occupied home country with a deadly mission, to assassinate a high ranking Nazi leader. That Nazi asshole was dubbed The Hangman, The Butcher Of Prague, a truly hideous man who would also become know as one of the architects of the Holocaust, that beast was Reinhard Heydrich. Continue reading “Hangmen Also Die! (1943) Operation Anthropoid Nazi Assassination”
Having sat in his room staring at the swinging pendulum of his ticking clock for two years straight, Stephen Neale (Ray Milland) has had time contemplating life and reflecting what the future will hold for him. After being on his own for those years, Stephen fancies the hustle and bustle of London, to be surrounded by people again. He’s probably picked a bad time to visit London, the city is being pounded by the Germans during The Blitz but he’s determined. With a spring in his step he takes off to the local train station. As he leaves his building of residence, the camera pans to show the engraved sign on the wall, Lembridge Asylum! Continue reading “Ministry of Fear (1944) Nazis, Bombs & Spies, Fortune Tellers & Cake!”
Tough driving rain smashes against the brick fortress of the Westgate Penitentiary prison walls. If the place wasn’t dark enough as it was, the bleak cold rain just added more dreary dread to the inmates banged up inside. Six guys per cell room, squeezed in like sardines, so close together you just had to be friends. Luckily the six in cellroom R17 are tight together, a band of brothers watching out for each other. Continue reading “Brute Force (1947) Sadistic Prison Guard Gives Lancaster Beef!”
Was recommended this noir thriller starring husband and wife double act Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. I for sure wasn’t expecting to be wowed by its unique take right from the get go. For this film’s first few acts are played out entirely in first person perspective. Meaning that our “hero” Vincent Parry (Humphrey Bogart) face is never seen for a big portion of the film. Filmed in a point of view (POV) style or his face being covered up. A very brave decision for the studio to have made I can imagine, not having your big star, leading man’s face on the screen. Continue reading “Dark Passage (1947) Bogart In First Person Face-Off Thriller”
Funny how you watch one superb film and before you know it there’s two more excellent films you see connected to it and off back you go into movieland. This time it happened straight off the bat of watching the first-rate 1955 Samuel Fuller directed, Japan meets US gangster flick starring Robert Ryan called House Of Bamboo. On further investigation it revealed that the film was actually a loose remake of a 1948 Richard Widmark movie called The Street With No Name featuring the same theme of infiltrating a gangster outfit. Now I was hit by a dilemma? I can’t do every film I see, so which film gets a post? Continue reading “The Street With No Name (1948) FBI, Gangsters, Infiltration and Informants”
Another great thing about doing this here blog is discovering actors I had previously missed. Robert Ryan is one such actor. I know his face well from a couple of classic films, two big favourites of mine too. Playing Deke Thornton in Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch and Col Everett Dasher Breed in Robert Aldrich’s The Dirty Dozen but you know what I’m ashamed to say I never knew his name or filmography. Continue reading “Crossfire (1947) Robert Ryan & Hate Is Like A Loaded Gun!”
I’m in seventh heaven coming into the world of noir very late in the game. The fatalist stories might be depressing to some but they are so honest, brutal, compelling and extremely exciting. Quick penned stories that leave out all the filler and go straight to the killer. Hard hitting and original every single time. I watch one, another is recommended. Continue reading “Detour (1945) Savage Tongued Savage”