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Searching for FILM NOIR recommendations

Old 01-17-06, 11:46 PM
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Searching for FILM NOIR recommendations

Hi. I’m looking for your recommendations on Film Noir titles. I own the following and have watched them several times - Maltese Falcon, Big Sleep, Key Largo, Laura, Out of the Past, Murder My Sweet, Kiss Me Deadly. I love each of these.

I recently watched Scarlet Street and Touch of Evil on TCM and hated both of them. I found the former unsatisfying and the latter was just too much Welles being Welles. I prefer the Mike Hammer, Philip Marlowe type of noir where the POV is the “good guy’s” rather than the criminal’s. I did, however, like Double Indemnity and Postman Aalways Rings Twice but I don’t really think I want to add any more of the “couple fall in love and commit murder and get caught in the end” type of noir.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
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Old 01-18-06, 01:04 AM
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The Long Goodbye - 70's Marlow film directed by Robert Altman
The Third Man - you may have already seen it but its an exceptional film.
The Killers - 1946 version
Notorious
Pickup On South Street

A few foreign noirs.
Les Diaboliques
Rififi Kind of a combination of noir and caper film.
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Old 01-18-06, 02:40 AM
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Thanks, Bateman. I have Notorious and I never thought of it as noir, but you're absolutely right. It fits the genre well. The rest seem to be just what I'm looking for, especially The Killers, which has what seems like an exemplary treatment by Criterion with 2 versions and wonderful extras. I'm really looking forward to that. Thanks again for the input.
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Old 01-18-06, 03:04 AM
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Originally Posted by arod1171
Thanks, Bateman. I have Notorious and I never thought of it as noir, but you're absolutely right. It fits the genre well. The rest seem to be just what I'm looking for, especially The Killers, which has what seems like an exemplary treatment by Criterion with 2 versions and wonderful extras. I'm really looking forward to that. Thanks again for the input.
I would recommend The Third Man the strongest since it's one of my favorite films. The directing, writing and acting are all excellent. It's also a great criterion release (though the extras are disappointing for a criterion).
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Old 01-18-06, 04:52 AM
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I will say it again.


Night Of The Hunter


Thank me later
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Old 01-18-06, 05:16 AM
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If you didn't like Touch of Evil or Scarlet Street, that narrows my suggestions a bit - you could try the following from the Fox Film Noir series:

Laura
Kiss of Death
The Dark Corner
Somewhere in the Night


also Universal's The Big Clock, and D.O.A., which is in the public domain, but the Image release of it is decent.
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Old 01-18-06, 07:00 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions, Cameron and jackal. I will take those all under advisement. Laura is already a favorite in my collection. The Dark Corner looks very interesting, especially the casting. I'm looking forward to seeing Lucille Ball in this.
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Old 01-18-06, 08:40 AM
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I'm not sure if all of these titles are available on DVD, but...

The Big Heat
Lady In the Lake
In a Lonely Place
Woman In the Window
The Asphalt Jungle
The Big Clock
Gilda
Strangers On a Train
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Old 01-18-06, 08:12 PM
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In a Lonely Place and Strangers on a Train are two of my favorite films and are on DVD.

I'd also recommend Panic in the Streets and Narrow Margin, both recently released on DVD.
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Old 01-18-06, 11:47 PM
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The original Cape Fear with Gregory Peck and Robert Mitchum is an excellent noirish movie. I think that you can now find this in the Wal*Mart dump bin and it's definitely worth the five bucks.
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Old 01-19-06, 12:49 AM
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You may want to check out Nightmare Alley...plenty of Noir atmosphere and great performances across the board. Plus some pretty unsavory subject matter...what's not to like?
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Old 01-19-06, 01:49 AM
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THE KILLING - Kubrick's classic heist film
CRISS CROSS - love triangle of Burt Lancaster, Yvonne deCarlo & slimy Dan Duryea
SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS - Burt Lancaster as powerful NYC gossip columnist, scathing dialogue and superb jazz score by Elmer Bernstein
ODDS AGAINST TOMORROW - Robert Ryan and Harry Belafonte in a late noir(1959) directed by Robert Wise that explores racial issues. Noir goddess Gloria Grahame is spectacular in a five minute role as Ryan's horny neighbor. Haunting jazz score written and performed by John Lewis and the Modern Jazz Quartet.
I WANT TO LIVE - Susan Hayward won the Oscar for her performance as a hooker who gets sent to the gas chamber for murder. Tends to get melodramatic but the long and sloooow ending sequence of her execution in the San Quentin gas chamber is as bleak as noir can be. Stunning musical store by johnny mandel featuring West Coast Jazz legend Gerry Mulligan.
DETOUR - Poverty Row feature is available only in several crappy looking PD versions, but this only enhances the gritty story of possibly film noir's ultimate loser, who has the misfortune of running into Velma, the biggest ball-breaking c*** in movie history.
LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN - Technicolor noir (not an oxymoron) with Gene Tierney never more beautiful and never more cold-blooded.
SLIGHTLY SCARLET - Technicolor crime drama with lightweight plot but famous cinematographer John Alton masterfully creates the shadowy noir look with deep rich color.
THE BIG HEAT - Lee Marvin is one mean SOB. I fell in love with Gloria Grahame and you will too.

Ok, that's enough. I have to thank TCM's first noir festivals about 8 years ago for turning me into a noir fan. In the last week I've watched bombshell Audrey Totter in TENSION and LADY IN THE LAKE for about the 5th time. Keep watching, one day you might even enjoy those "couple fall in love and commit murder and get caught in the end types of noir." Actually I think that description is not quite accurate, since noir couples don't fall in love, they fall in lust. That's why the best noirs have a femme fatale.
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Old 01-19-06, 12:06 PM
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Well, you guys have come through in true DVDtalk fashion. I now have a laundry list of titles with which to build my noir collection. As I searched the titles you suggested, other titles came up and I have amassed a list of about 50 noirs so far. I’m sure this list will grow to about 100 and I look forward to collecting those over the next 6 months.
Note to JamesBrian: I too am a big Gloria Grahame fan (she’s superb in Oklahoma) and I didn’t realize she was in so many noirs. Her performance in The Big Heat was quite memorable. I’m also going to add a few “Double Indemnity” type of noirs for my own viewing pleasure so thanks for the prodding.
I went down to the local mall and picked up a nice selection of noirs thanks to the suggestions here and I watched The Dark Corner and Somewhere in the Night. Both were wonderful. I’m looking forward to watching them with the commentaries and learn more about this fascinating genre. Thanks to all.
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Old 01-19-06, 06:27 PM
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If you like Gloria Grahame, then move In a Lonely Place to the top of your list. She's great in it, and it's a terrific film.

Thanks for this thread! I've found a few suggestions for new noirs, and I'm eager to watch all the old ones again...
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