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Film noir runneth over on the schedule lately


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Hi, Here are some other examples of Noir Comedy that I have listed.

 

 

 

* Whistling in the Dark (1941)

* My Favorite Brunette (1947)

* Fly-by-Night (1942)

* Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)

* Beat the Devil (1953)

* Hail the Conquering Hero (1944)

* The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944)

* They've Got Me Covered (1944)

* Lady on a Train (1945)

* Murder He Says (1945)

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MovieMadness, while I respect your movie knowledge in coming up with a list like that, I have to disagree with it. Now some of those films I haven't seen, so can't comment there, But the Preston Sturges comedies? You think they're even slightly noir? I accept the Sturges had a cynical vision which he infuses into all his comedies; but to me there's nothing even remotely noirish about, say, *Miracle at Morgan's Creek* . Just because its subject matter was a bit outre for the time doesn' t make it even an honourary noir, in my opinion.

 

And even though I myself mentioned *Arsenic and Old Lace*, I didn't seriously mean that it resembled a film noir.

 

I think what you had in mind with that list was comedies that had slightly "underground" subject matter, "black comedies", and films involving crime , including murder sometimes, that are also funny. Fair enough, I agree with that and pointed that out to finance in an earlier post: that is, that you can have a film about crime, even murder, and it can still be funny.

But that doesn't make it noir. Not that I want to get into yet another discussion of "what defines film noir?" because we've been there so many times.

 

The only title on that list I'd count as film noir is *Lady on a Train*. But in all fairness to your list, I haven't seen the first three. Or *They've Got Me Covered* .

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You are right as noir is a personal preference. Here are a few more to look at coming up that could be interesting.

 

Devil's Doorway, April 20th Noir Western

Men in War June 2nd Noir War

The Band Wagon June 26th Noir Musical

Reign of Terror June 30th Noir Horror

 

Others coming up.

 

Dial M for Murder April 12th Color Noir

Ministry of fear April 12th Standard Noir

Glass Key April 14th Standard Noir

 

PS I am just posting these as something to consider, this is not a list set in stone as we know. To each may be different, even a color noir may not make sense. But a noir comedy is certainly possible, as is war and horror. To find the perfect list would be slimmed down a lot.

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I haven't seen *Julie* , nor, to be honest, had I even heard of it before you listed it here. I looked it up; sounds intriguing, although it's hard to imagine Doris Day in anything even remotely noir. Oxymoronic. However, one thing I've learned with movies is, never pre-assume anything until you've seen the film.

 

I saw *Out of the Fog* quite recently, and couldn't believe how much I disliked it. As you say, it looks very noirish, and it includes a number of noir motifs. I really like both John Garfield and Ida Lupino. And, come to think of it, Thomas Mitchell. But the film did not engage my interest or attention very much. It's so obviously based on a play, for one thing, despite its several waterfront scenes. It feels play-ish, the dialogue is stagey. I also felt "ripped off" that we don't even get to see the first date between Lupino and Garfield, it happens off-screen. This is a mistake, since it's hard to understand what Ida sees in the Garfield character. Presumeably she thinks he represents excitement, action, danger (certainly that), everything that's the opposite of routine and boring. But we don't get to see this, and partly what I like about movies is witnessing the development of relationships between characters.

 

In any case, the Garfield character is completely dislikeable in every way; at first I kept expecting to see a soft side to him, a recognition that he is being an utterly horrible person. But this never happens and we never get much of an insight into his character.

 

Sorry, I guess I've babbled on a bit about *Out of the Fog* . But I'd looked forward to seeing it so much, such a great evocative title, such a good cast - I think I'd have been easier on it if I hadn't had my expectations dashed so much.

 

Anyway, MovieMadness, I do agree that the film does fit your "semi-noir" category, by virtue of its mood and look.

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it's hard to imagine Doris Day in anything even remotely noir

 

I don't know about noir, but STORM WARNING deals with some pretty ugly issues. And Doris is not the only traditionally light performer in the cast. It also features Ginger Rogers and a guy named Ronald Reagan!

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i'm not one hundred per cent sure but i think *the glass key* (1942) was last shown a few months ago. it sticks in my mind that it was one of robert osbourne's picks one evening along with three other films he chose. alan ladd and veronica lake are terrific in the film. why does veronica lake remind me of gloria grahame?

 

Edited by: ganstagator on Apr 12, 2011 7:44 PM

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I love this version of "The Glass Key" with Ladd and Lake. But I would really like to see the 1935 version with George Raft and Edward Arnold and Claire Dodd. It's a Paramount picture also. They should have run it as part of Ray Milland SotM as he plays Taylor Henry.......

 

Edited by: fredbaetz on Apr 13, 2011 2:44 AM

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GLASS KEY is a good one. It falters a little when Ladd and Lake get all soft and mushy. But when it's good guys and baddies, it's all noir. Oh, how I'd like to see the other version. I love Edward Arnold. Your idea concerning Ray Milland month is a great one!

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*Crossfire* is an unusual noir in some ways - all those soldiers on leave; in other ways it fits the definition of classic noir very well. I enjoy Gloria Grahame 's role in it as the world weary paid dancer.

And it's got to hold the record for the most Roberts in any movie, including my two favourite Roberts, Mitchum and Ryan.

 

I have heard that the anti-semitic element was a substitute for the original target of hatred, homosexuals. Where did I hear that? Can't remember, so I'm afraid I can't supply the details. If the film was based on a play or short story, it's possible the gay factor was present there, but that they changed it for 1947 audiences.

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The film "Crossfire" was based on a book called "The Brick Foxhole" The theme of the book was changed from homophobia to antisemitism because of the Hays code. It really is a terrific film with a fine screenplay by future director Richard Brooks and some fine acting. Robert Ryan and Gloria Graham both received Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting roles. It's director Edward Dmytryk was also nominated as was the picture. This was the first "B" picture to get a Best Picture nomination. Many though that it lost because of Dmytryk and the film's producer Adrian Scott was up before the HoUAC and refused to name names

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I have seen it -twice- and I wouldn't say it was a standard noir. More like a documentary-style police procedural. It's got some good moments, but I wouldn't go out of my way to see it again.

 

Sorry, MovieMadness, it must be beginning to seem like I'm always disagreeing with you. I don't want to be a "negative nancy", but I guess I do think about movies - or at least their "labels" - differently from you. Please don't think I''m going out of my way to contradict everything you say. I enjoy your posts and think it's great whenever someone starts contributing to this thread.

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