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{font:Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif}*The Grand Central Murder* (1942) Dir: S. Sylvan Simon, with an ensemble cast of Van Heflin, Patricia Dane, and about 12 others.

 

Synopsis from Imdb:

 

A convict being escorted in for retrial escapes at Grand Central and threatens his old girlfriend (Dane)on the phone. She flees for her new beau's private railcar at the same station. When she is then found murdered the cops round up a motley group of suspects including the escapee, several guys feeling sore at the way the gold-digging broad had treated them, some jealous dames, and a private eye (Hefiln) already on the case.

 

This has got some great Grand Central Terminal rail sequences and an interesting method of murder. The majority of the film is told in flashback as different suspects tell their stories. It has a *Thin Man* vibe going for it 7/10{font}

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GRAND CENTRAL MURDER is very cool! I've seen it before, but have it on the DVR to check out again, thanks to TCM! I didn't get back home until yesterday afternoon, so couldn't see it in the morning.

 

Thanks for your reviews of your recently viewed flix!!! Enjoy reading them!

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*Witness To Murder* 1954

 

Poor Barbara Stanwyck sees a guy in the building across the street murder a babe through the window, but lets the bumbling cops convince her that she dreamed it.

 

The cops also don't think the gentleman she saw do this was apparently capable of murder, never mind that he is a former Nazi. Also no body was found, and they did an exhaustive search of about five minutes.

 

Remember, this happens in Los Angeles and these types of things are called in all the time. No need to believe any of it.

 

But no, the former Nazi did commit a murder, and now he has the cops right where he wants them. He uses them to get back at Barbara by typing up fake letters he says she sent him accusing him of murder. This is all so nutty they send Barbara to an mental ward.

 

Once she is out the former Nazi taunts her by admitting it. Then he says he has written her suicide note that she is about to carry out with his generous help. He goes into a Nazi tirade how he will conquer the world and then goes about to have her commit suicide.

 

Will Barbara escape? What happens to the "former" Nazi?

 

Will the bumbling cops save the day?

 

It's all in the ending.

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*Caged* (1950) Dir by John Cromwell with Eleanor Parker, Agnes Moorehead, Ellen Corby, Jane Darwell and many others, sort of a very noirish prison drama with an extremely dark ending.

 

Imdb synopsis:

 

Frightened 19-year-old Marie Allen gets sent to an Illinois penitentiary for being an accomplice in an armed robbery. A sympathetic warden tries to help, but her efforts are subverted by cruel matron Evelyn Harper. Marie's harsh experiences turn her from doe-eyed innocent to hard-nosed con.

 

On TCM the other night.

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*Woman In The Window**Woman In The Window* (1944) director Fritz Lang, with Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Raymond Massey, Edmund Breon, and Dan Duryea.

 

Professor Wanley (Robinson) and his friends obsess about a portrait of a woman in the window next to their men's club. Wanley just happens to meet the woman while admiring her portrait, and finds himself in her apartment when her boyfriend bursts in and attacks Wanley. During their confrontation Wanley is getting choked to the point of unconsciousness when he manages to stab him to death.

 

 

So beings the story of cover-up and blackmail. Its a bit of a lighthearted noir than most, if I had to choose between this and "Scarlet Street" I'd go with the latter. 7/10

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I agree, they're often compared because of same director and cast, but for me, *Scarlet Street* is the superior film.

Nothing beats that ending...Poor old Edward G. hearing Joan Bennet's taunting haunting voice, reminding him even in death that she never loved him, it was always "Jooohhhnny...Oh, Jooohhhnnyy..."

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  • 2 weeks later...

*Panic In the Streets* (1950) Dir. Elia Kazan, with Richard Widmark, Paul Douglas, Barbara Bel Geddes, Jack Palance, Zero Mostel, and the gritty underbelly of New Orleans. Can't get enough of it, 2nd viewing, 10/10 :)

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*They Live By Night* (1949) Dir Nicholas Ray, with Farley Granger, Cathy O'Donnell, Howard Da Silva, Jay C. Flippen, Helen Craig, and Will Wright. This Noir balances better the romance and Noir elements than Moontide did, it has some great sequences with the three main male leads. Granger is Kid Bowie, Howard Da Silva is One-Eye Chickamaw, overly sensitive about having only one eye, goes ballistic everytime a radio announcer calls him One-Eye, lol, and , Jay C. Flippen is T Dub the older wiser con, O'Donnell is young "hillbilly" Keehie.

The three cons break out of prison and begin a spree of bank jobs, Bowie finds love with Keechie (Chickamaw's niece) at Chickamaw's brothers place where the gang is hidingout till the heat is off. The gang eventually splits up with the loot and Keechie leaves with Bowie, they get married at a marriage mill and try to lead a normal life but the gang drags him back to pull another job, which goes all to hell. Da Silva has a great disturbing close up as One-Eyed Chickamaw.

This is sort of a very loose riff on Bonnie & Clyde. 8/10
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*Moontide *(1942) More a routine love story with Noir-ish lighting than anything else, OK performances by Gabon, Lupino, and Raines, *looks all set bound but the sets are not very interesting,* nothing I'd recommend to hard core Noir lovers. 6.5/10

The director wanted to film at the San Pedro harbor breakwater, but the bombing of Pearl Harbor had just happened, and the coast was under blackout orders.



Edited by: Arturo on Sep 6, 2011 3:16 PM
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