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Hell, finding something to say ONCE about ICE STATION ZEBRA is taxing enough.

"Good Sunday afternoon everyone. Today we're showing ICE STATION ZEBRA from 1968. This film has Rock Hudson in it. It also has an orchestral prelude and entr-acte music. It really doesn't need either. Enjoy!"

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  • 4 weeks later...

I'm thrilled to hear that Noir Alley will be moved to Sat nights with a repeat in the Sun morning usual time slot. I work some Sunday mornings, so I sometimes miss it. ( I know I can DVR it, but I just NEVER get around to watching anything I've recorded.)

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Eddie did an especially good job with the introes and outroes to THE BIG HEAT today, citing the source novel in a very interesting way- I've read it, but it's been a looooooooong time. Made me want to check out the other books by William McGivern...

He also mentioned- in the outro- the names of authors CHARLES WILLEFORD (whose novel PICK UP is excellent), Lionel White (whose superb source novel CLEAN BREAK is better than THE KILLING (1956)- the film based on it), JIM THOMPSON (one of my faves) and DAVID GOODIS who- sorry not sorry- has never written a book I have been able to finish, and in one instance i only had ten pages to go.

i love how unabashedly literary to a downright esoteric level he is and how he brings it in to the film discussions.

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1 hour ago, speedracer5 said:

I love the pulp fiction covers.  Book cover illustration and design is really lacking these days.

not meaning to start another techno-tangent, but books as a printed, paper medium are on the way out.

(i'm not saying i'm "for" this by any means, i'm just saying that's how it is.)

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Just now, LornaHansonForbes said:

not meaning to start another techno-tangent, but books as a printed, paper medium are on the way out.

(i'm not saying i'm "for" this by any means, i'm just saying that's how it is.)

This is really unfortunate.  I do not like reading everything on a screen.  I'm definitely not going to read a book on my phone and I don't want to read it on a computer or a tablet.  There's something about turning the pages that makes reading a book more enjoyable.  It's hard for me to do audio books because I get distracted too easily and cannot pay attention enough to actually listen to the book.

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4 minutes ago, speedracer5 said:

This is really unfortunate.  I do not like reading everything on a screen.  I'm definitely not going to read a book on my phone and I don't want to read it on a computer or a tablet.  There's something about turning the pages that makes reading a book more enjoyable.  It's hard for me to do audio books because I get distracted too easily and cannot pay attention enough to actually listen to the book.

I'm with you all the way, Sister.

THE ONE THING I WILL THROW IN THOUGH is the fact that a lot of paperbacks from the vintage era "turned a corner" in recent years to where they are in unreadable condition. i remember reading paperbacks from the 50s and 60s in highshool in the 90's, but nowadays i cannot because they will either fall apart in my hands or REALLY IRRITATE MY THROAT AND EYES from the dust/mold.

luckily a lot of vintage crime underwent reprintings in the 1990s in better bound editions that've held up well with time

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Lorna baby, I'm with ya on your Eddie Muller appreciation for his comments on "The Big Heat". And I have to say, I absolutely love "The Big Heat". In fact, it's one of my very favourite noirs.

Let me try - hopefully briefly - to explain why. Hmm, well for a start, it's directed by the great Fritz Lang, Mr. Noir himself. Fritz Lang is one of my favourite directors, and look at all the great noirs he made:  Scarlet Street, Rancho Notorious ( come on, it's at least as much a noir as it is a Western), Ministry of Fear, The Blue Gardenia, Human Desire - - and that's just to name a few. I love this guy. 

Then there's the actors - I know you're not a fan of Glenn Ford, but I have to disagree with you about that, especially Glenn's performance in TBH.  I think he's perfect as the angry- no, furious - maverick cop who wants to rout the bad guys, first because it's the right thing to do, and second, because they killed his wife (played by Marlon Brando's sister, no less ! If you look carefully, you can see the resemblance.)

Lee Marvin gives even Richard Widmark (a la Tommy Udo) a run for his money as possibly the nastiest meanest bad guy in noir. 

But it's Gloria Grahame who gets my vote for "The Big Heat"'s most memorable performance. I love Gloria, no matter what she's in, but if asked to name her best role, I'd say it was as Lee Marvin's girlfriend,  the tragic Debby in "The Big Heat"  (I know, I know, there's "In a Lonely Place". But Debby's a more interesting character than Laurel.) I love the way she prances about in Marvin's apartment ( where she obviously lives), constantly mixing herself drinks and preening in front of the mirror. And she is just as pretty and sexy as she thinks she is, so that scalding coffee she gets is truly heart-breaking, especially as Debby doesn't know how to do anything else other than be pretty. (Like that old nursery rhyme,"  "My face is my fortune, sir", she said. ")

Anyway, I could say a lot more about this great noir, but I said I'd try to be brief here, and I'm already not ( being brief.)

Anyone who wants to discuss this fun, classic noir, please jump in. Even if you think I'm over-rating it, that's ok ( even though I'm not !), tell me what you think of it.

 

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I’m not a huge fan of Glenn Ford, but he does a great job in The Big Heat. He actually has a lot of emotion in this film that a lot of his roles don’t require him to have. In fact, the cast is great and it’s probably due to Lang’s direction. 

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26 minutes ago, LornaHansonForbes said:

THE ONE THING I WILL THROW IN THOUGH is the fact that a lot of paperbacks from the vintage era "turned a corner" in recent years to where they are in unreadable condition. i remember reading paperbacks from the 50s and 60s in highshool in the 90's, but nowadays i cannot because they will either fall apart in my hands or REALLY IRRITATE MY THROAT AND EYES from the dust/mold.

Paperbacks typically have hard lives & aren't often stored with much care - so finding vintage examples that are still in semi-decent nick is getting pretty hard. I've got some from the 50/60s that I retrieved in the 70/80's from used bookshops on Charing Cross Road London, that are still in a reasonable state, but last time I was there, both they & good used bookshops were starting to get thin on the ground.

If you still possess paper media, hang on to it!

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5 minutes ago, limey said:

Paperbacks typically have hard lives & aren't often stored with much care - so finding vintage examples that are still in semi-decent nick is getting pretty hard. I've got some from the 50/60s that I retrieved in the 70/80's from used bookshops on Charing Cross Road London, that are still in a reasonable state, but last time I was there, both they & good used bookshops were starting to get thin on the ground.

If you still possess paper media, hang on to it!

Damn,  do I possess paper media. I've never counted them, but I must have hundreds of books in my home. My husband and I are both big readers (especially him), plus, for years I worked in book stores, where of course I got a staff discount - and even if I hadn't, all those deliciously tempting books coming in all the time were too much for me to resist. I bought many a book in those book stores I worked in, and each one is still taking up space somewhere in my house. What I'm going to do with them all when I finally move is anyone's guess.

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Amen to the comments about books!  I love them.  I don't have a tablet and I like having a book to hold and carry with me.  Hard or soft cover is all right by me although paperbacks are more portable.  I love magazines, too.  I'm a print media kind of person.

I was extremely happy with Eddie's presentation of THE BIG HEAT.  I was only going to watch the intro and outro but ended up watching the whole thing - again.  I catch new things every time I see it.  The whole cast is excellent.  Lee Marvin is such a bad***, even burning Carolyn Jones' hand with a cigarette.  Gloria Grahame is just perfect in every scene she's in.  I love her prancing around the apartment mixing cocktails!  Glen Ford may be an acquired taste and sometimes can seem wooden, but he's really good here and comes across as an honest cop and decent guy who really loves his wife and kid.  I'm sure his character slipped that lady with the limp a few extra bucks to knock on Larry's door.

Good to have our Noir Alley back and the Saturday night showing joining Sunday is a great idea.  I think TCM listened to us viewers on this one.

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19 hours ago, misswonderly3 said:

Lorna baby, I'm with ya on your Eddie Muller appreciation for his comments on "The Big Heat". And I have to say, I absolutely love "The Big Heat". In fact, it's one of my very favourite noirs.

Let me try - hopefully briefly - to explain why. Hmm, well for a start, it's directed by the great Fritz Lang, Mr. Noir himself. Fritz Lang is one of my favourite directors, and look at all the great noirs he made:  Scarlet Street, Rancho Notorious ( come on, it's at least as much a noir as it is a Western), Ministry of Fear, The Blue Gardenia, Human Desire - - and that's just to name a few. I love this guy. 

Then there's the actors - I know you're not a fan of Glenn Ford, but I have to disagree with you about that, especially Glenn's performance in TBH.  I think he's perfect as the angry- no, furious - maverick cop who wants to rout the bad guys, first because it's the right thing to do, and second, because they killed his wife (played by Marlon Brando's sister, no less ! If you look carefully, you can see the resemblance.)

Lee Marvin gives even Richard Widmark (a la Tommy Udo) a run for his money as possibly the nastiest meanest bad guy in noir. 

But it's Gloria Grahame who gets my vote for "The Big Heat"'s most memorable performance. I love Gloria, no matter what she's in, but if asked to name her best role, I'd say it was as Lee Marvin's girlfriend,  the tragic Debby in "The Big Heat"  (I know, I know, there's "In a Lonely Place". But Debby's a more interesting character than Laurel.) I love the way she prances about in Marvin's apartment ( where she obviously lives), constantly mixing herself drinks and preening in front of the mirror. And she is just as pretty and sexy as she thinks she is, so that scalding coffee she gets is truly heart-breaking, especially as Debby doesn't know how to do anything else other than be pretty. (Like that old nursery rhyme,"  "My face is my fortune, sir", she said. ")

Anyway, I could say a lot more about this great noir, but I said I'd try to be brief here, and I'm already not ( being brief.)

Anyone who wants to discuss this fun, classic noir, please jump in. Even if you think I'm over-rating it, that's ok ( even though I'm not !), tell me what you think of it.

 

YOU KNOW IT'S FUNNY,

(spoilers in re THE BIG HEAT included)

I caught Eddie's remarks and then had to run my father to Costco [a real-life Film Noir in and of itself] and then made it back after Jocelyn Brando had blown up, but I watched it from there and I've seen it in full quite a few times already...and i think i may be getting to a point where i've overwatched it, because this time there were things about it that bothered me...nothing major really, but I think the LIGHTING AND SET DIRECTION COULD'VE BEEN BETTER or at least more INTERESTING.

Columbia in the 40's had some of the absolute best set decoration and lighting around (see RETURN OF THE VAMPIRE or any musical RITA HAYWORTH made there), but COLUMBIA IN THE 50'S all too often has the same, routine, anesthetized FATHER KNOWS BEST style living room set for whatever production they had...for some reason they really seemed to like a CHINA HUTCH- and those sets are really prevalent in THE BIG HEAT (and a lot of Lang's other 50's films at Columbia.) This seemed out of place in one of the gangster's apartments (as did the lush philodendron by the door, i mean, he may have been a brutal mobster, but he's also a plant person I guess)...someone also pointed out to me a while back that COLUMBIA pictures of the 1950s ALL seem to have a mid-level background shadow in the lighting- i don't recall this being true in THE BIG HEAT- but while the film was certainly well shot, it wasn't innovatively filmed- not a lot of camera movement or variation from medium shots throughout, no tilted camera angles- the story has a slightly ludicrous quality to it, i don't think the visuals do them justice entirely.

maybe it's wrong, but i expect more ART from a GERMAN FILMMAKER.

however, i did like GLENN FORD this time around, i think he's one of the underrated ****heels of cinema, best when low key in his dickery whereas KIRK DOUGLAS is always swinging it around loud and clear (for more good examples of Ford's lowkey dickery, see also 3:10 to YUMA which, like WANCHO NATAWIOUS is also a western-noir hybwid.)

a triple bill on FUR IN FILM with THE BIG HEAT, BEYOND THE FOREST and MILDRED PIERCE would be awesome tho.

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On 3/4/2018 at 10:09 AM, LornaHansonForbes said:

Ah

That happy feeling you get when you discover that Oscar month is over by turning on TCM to find Eddie discussing THE BIG HEAT...

if you could bottle it, I’d be in line to buy it.

LOL. I even watched Heat again to celebrate (even though I've seen it a dozen times!)

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And as for the dames in Heat, dont forget Jeanette Nolan, especially nasty as the blackmailing widow. In her older years, she played nice little old ladies, but NOT HERE!

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