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16 hours ago, cigarjoe said:

An speaking of noirs, anybody catch the fact that Kiss of Death has a female VO narration by Coleen Gray? The only one I remembered before was Claire Trevor in Raw Deal, I wonder if there are any others?

Joan Crawford, if I remember correctly in Mildred Pierce and also in Possessed

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While RIDE THE PINK HORSE won't make my top ten, it wasn't bad. I agree with Detective Jim McCloud that Wanda Hendrix as Plia was the best character. I was also impressed with Thomas Gomez. I kept thinking how can this be the same guy who played Curly in TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT.  While I like Montgomery I don't think his performance was that great. Also, having  served in the military, if someone killed my army buddy blackmail wouldn't be my first choice. Anyway I give RTPH a C+, but I'm so glad Noir Alley is back.

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9 minutes ago, Hoganman1 said:

While RIDE THE PINK HORSE won't make my top ten, it wasn't bad. I agree with Detective Jim McCloud that Wanda Hendrix as Plia was the best character. I was also impressed with Thomas Gomez. I kept thinking how can this be the same guy who played Curly in TO HAVE AND HAVE NOT.  While I like Montgomery I don't think his performance was that great. Also, having  served in the military, if someone killed my army buddy blackmail wouldn't be my first choice. Anyway I give RTPH a C+, but I'm so glad Noir Alley is back.

Yep, as I watched it last night, the thought that another Bob with the last name of Mitchum could have made me believe in the Gagin character a little more.

I don't know what it is about Montgomery's portrayals of tough guys, but generally when he plays 'em  I never quite buy into the idea. It's like I can "see the strings" and notice his acting.

(...and as if his clipped style of speech always seems forced and unnatural for him)

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On 1/6/2020 at 9:18 AM, TomJH said:

In honour of the ladies in THE BIG SLEEP:

32a7d7905278014ac3b65e8dec15d5ac.jpg

17645-1718-0.jpg

bigsleep_1050_591_81_s_c1.jpg

4bac662ff51c012b28c4eb9ea3e96a5e.jpg

 

I realize I'm responding to a post made 2 months ago --sorry, guess I'm catching up a bit here.

Anyway, I know we were talking about "The Big Sleep" way back in January, and I don't want to get us all started on it again. Still, I couldn't help but notice, Tom, that although you say you post these pics "in honour of the ladies in "The Big Sleep" ", you omit one of the most important ones,  the one and only Agnes. Seems like quite an oversight. How come?

Image result for the big sleep agnes

"I never get any breaks, not even on this thread."

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14 minutes ago, misswonderly3 said:

I realize I'm responding to a post made 2 months ago --sorry, guess I'm catching up a bit here.

Anyway, I know we were talking about "The Big Sleep" way back in January, and I don't want to get us all started on it again. Still, I couldn't help but notice, Tom, that although you say you post these pics "in honour of the ladies in "The Big Sleep" ", you omit one of the most important ones,  the one and only Agnes. Seems like quite an oversight. How come?

Image result for the big sleep agnes

"I never get any breaks, not even on this thread."

Well, I guess I was thinking of the most glamourous female participants in The Big Sleep when I posted this,  MissW.

But before you call me (or, at least, think me) a superficial pig, I made another post on this thread around the same time that was exclusively devoted to the unbilled Sonia Darrin who played Agnes (and very well indeed) in a couple of scenes in the film. But, in retrospect, you're right. I should have included her in this post, as well. The lady deserves it, especially as she is the only cast member of the film who is capable of  reading this thread today. She's 95.

soniadarrin.jpg?quality=80&strip=all

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2 hours ago, TomJH said:

Well, I guess I was thinking of the most glamourous female participants in The Big Sleep when I posted this,  MissW.

But before you call me (or, at least, think me) a superficial pig, I made another post on this thread around the same time that was exclusively devoted to the unbilled Sonia Darrin who played Agnes (and very well indeed) in a couple of scenes in the film. But, in retrospect, you're right. I should have included her in this post, as well. The lady deserves it, especially as she is the only cast member of the film who is capable of  reading this thread today. She's 95.

 

Again, I don't want to get into a big discussion at this time about "The Big Sleep"  (I'd rather talk about "Ride the Pink Horse"),  but I have to take issue with your claiming you omitted Agnes on the grounds that you were only including "the most glamourous" ladies in the film. Agnes, say what you will about her, is pretty "glamourous"; and shirley more so than that taxi driver you included, cute though she may be.

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3 minutes ago, misswonderly3 said:

Again, I don't want to get into a big discussion at this time about "The Big Sleep"  (I'd rather talk about "Ride the Pink Horse"),  but I have to take issue with you're claiming you omitted Agnes on the grounds that you were only including "the most glamourous" ladies in the film. Agnes, say what you will about her, is pretty "glamourous"; and shirley more so than that taxi driver you included, cute though she may be.

It's all in the eye, MissW, it's all in the eye.

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1 hour ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

I enjoy Robert Montgomery in two films:  NIGHT MUST FALL and HERE COMES MR. JORDAN.

But his voice always sounds like Bugs Bunny.

Absolutely, to the first sentence, Bronxie! Those two would also be my favorites of Bob's, and along with They Were Expendable.

(...and never thought about your second sentence before, but darn if you're not right!)

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29 minutes ago, Dargo said:

Absolutely, to the first sentence, Bronxie! Those two would also be my favorites of Bob's, and along with They Were Expendable.

(...and never thought about your second sentence before, but darn if you're not right!)

Haven't seen TWE in a long time and don't even remember the caliber of performances from anyone in the cast.   Will have to check it out again and pay more attention!

Even in NIGHT MUST FALL I detect a slight Bugs undertone, lol.   

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Robert Montgomery directed and starred in (well somewhat),    the noir Lady in the Lake  and also did another film with Audrey  Totter,   The Saxon Charm.

I haven't see this latter film and I don't expect to see it on TCM since it is 40s' Universal:

  The Saxon Charm - 1948 - Poster.jpg

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58 minutes ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

And Lloyd Nolan LOOKS like Bugs Bunny.

(I've always thought so)

LOL

Hmmmm...maybe. But I don't recall Lloyd having a severe overbite at all, Bronxie?! ;)

And re your next statement about Bugs and Zac Scott...I'll just say here that because I can't remember a time in which Bugs ever sported a pencil-thin mustache, I'll have to reserve judgement on THIS one for a later date, and until I can find a shot on the internet of that rascally rabbit sportin' a cookie-duster other than the following one where he's evidently channeling "Uncle Joe" Stalin here...

 

See the source image

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52 minutes ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

See the source image

Yeah, once again I suppose I can kind'a see what you mean using this shot of him, Bronxie.

And speaking of Mr. Nolan here...

I WAS about to say that perhaps your perception of his visual appearance being reminiscent of Bugs Bunny, might have been swayed a bit due to their mutual combination Brooklyn/Bronx NYC accent(Nolan's always sounded like that to me anyway), BUT after just now searching out Lloyd's bio, I was somewhat surprised to find he was a California Boy from the Bay Area.

(...and here after all these years of watching Nolan playing the hardboiled streetwise cop or tough guy and hearing his voice, I'm now even more impressed with how he was able to sell his tough guy act in all those films, and in contrast to my earlier stated opinion about  Bob Montgomery's lesser ability to do the same)

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Ah! Thank you!  Although when I watch Lloyd in what I think is his finest performance (and my favorite), Officer McShane from A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN, Bugs never crosses my mind, lol.

I too was shocked to discover that Nolan wasn't from my neck of the woods, or even Brooklyn!  He always sounded like a genuine Noo Yawk guy to me as well.  (then again, who knew Les Tremayne was British?) 

 

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In his outro to Ride the Pink Horse Eddie Muller was somewhat dismissive of Robert Montgomery's performance, saying it "lacked gravitas" and suggesting that the part could have been played better by Richard Conte, Sterling Hayden, and someone else--perhaps Robert Mitchum. Although I would agree with the general proposition that Richard Conte and Robert Mitchum are usually better actors than Montgomery (Sterling Hayden is an actor I often find unsympathetic, but good for unsympathetic roles), I do not think that the character of Lucky Gagin needs gravitas at all, and the relatively lightweight Montgomery is just about perfect for the role. This dude is so in over his head. He's tough, but not nearly so smart as he thinks he is. Montgomery has enough charisma to make it believable that the Wanda Hendrix and Thomas Gomez characters are drawn to him, but his lack of understanding of Pila (Hendrix) is deliciously funny.

I agree with everyone who is impressed by Wanda Hendrix. If she's in the background of a shot, as happens several times, we're usually looking at her. She's also great in Confidential Agent--I think she had my best supporting actress award for that year--and it's truly unfortunate that her career was derailed by her involvement with Audie Murphy. Eddie Muller provided some of those grim details.

Thomas Gomez does his best with a role that's not very subtle, but I am more impressed by Fred Clark, Art Smith, and Andrea King. All three are just about perfect. The script by Ben Hecht and Charles Lederer is full of good lines, and these actors make the most of them. For a small example of how good the writing and acting is, take the little scene where Andrea King intrudes on Montgomery's lunch with Hendrix. She's perfectly polite to the young Indian woman--Emily Post and Amy Vanderbilt would have been proud--while in effect asserting her superiority with every syllable, and Andrea King doesn't overplay the scene, which would have been easy to do. The movie is really that good.

Then there's Russell Metty's cinematography, which Eddie Muller praised in his intro. Muller mentions the great and very complex opening shot, and he suggests that it inspired the long opening shot of Touch of Evil, which Metty also photographed. To throw another kind word Montgomery's way, he shows amazing growth as a director from Lady in the Lake to Ride the Pink Horse.

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2 hours ago, kingrat said:

I do not think that the character of Lucky Gagin needs gravitas at all, and the relatively lightweight Montgomery is just about perfect for the role. This dude is so in over his head. He's tough, but not nearly so smart as he thinks he is. Montgomery has enough charisma to make it believable that the Wanda Hendrix and Thomas Gomez characters are drawn to him, but his lack of understanding of Pila (Hendrix) is deliciously funny.

Not a bad point about the gravitas for the character, but what about the actor? Montgomery fails miserably. Gagin comes across as someone's goon, he kind of reminds me of rich man's Elisha Cooke Jr, who I like very much but he played those officious over-stylized and phony tough guys that are usually handled by smarter, cooler guys. Montgomery just looked out of his element (although Cooke Jr would not have worked here, of course). It's clear that he might have come across better if he had played to his usual cool, but that would not be Gagin. I just felt that he was not able to dumb down his performance to be what Gagin was supposed to be. ... Not sure what the correct understanding of Pila is, she comes across a sort of guardian angel type. I didn't necessarily see her as falling for Gagin, at least in any conventional way. She was almost other worldly in a sense, as you suggest. Her payoff seems to be that she has a wonderful story to tell ... Thomas Gomez is splendid and deserving of the nomination he received. I don't know Andrea King, she was great. A Director's dream for any high-born ultra-sophisticated beyotch type, or any role for a high classed looker. She did some movies in the 40s but then turned practically exclusively to TV when that age began (I looked her up).

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