2022 Noirvember - Just Plain Rotten
Two weeks into Noirvember and I'm already up to my neck in thugs and dames rotten to their cores. I'm talking about eggs that'll make Snow White's apple look good by comparison. To help me judge these shady characters and their flicks, my rating system:
Sister, I’ve Known Some Pretty Hard Cases in My Time; You Make ‘em All Look Like Putty. = ***
You've Probably Had Your Bread Buttered on Both Sides Since the Day You Were Born. = **
I Wouldn't Give You the Skin Off a Grape = *
Time to fan that hammer, copper.
FALLEN ANGEL - Ever since I was a kid, I've been a huge Dana Andrews fan. It's rare that I've seen him play the heavy but here he does a great job of trying to con a good-hearted Alice Faye so he can afford to win over the deeply troubled Linda Darnell. SMH, when will we learn? *
THE BLUE DHALIA - Another swoon-worthy performance by Veronica Lake but this movie bears the distinction of being the one and only film produced from an original script by Raymond Chandler, thanks in large part to his fights with censors as well as his personal demons. *
THE DARK CORNER - A pretty good yarn about a stand-up doll try to save a chump that's sinking faster than an elephant with cement slippers, this film is best remembered for Lucille Ball not being Lucy. *
THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE - Holy heck! Lana Turner's performance (her personal favorite) as the blonde vamp that we love despite knowing that she'll drown us when we're leaning over the sink is simply AH-MAZING! That this film also happens to be a great yarn about two fools so deeply in love that they'd rather see each other dead rather than never seeing each other again — wow, there's a reason this is a classic. ***
KISS OF DEATH - The crowning jewel of this scummy screen gem is the knock-out performance by Richard Widmark as the unnervingly creepy heavy. I'm positive we're still feeling the aftershocks of the actor's choice to give this killer a chilling giggle. Damn good stuff. **
It's a tough one but my pick of this lot would be THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE (but KISS OF DEATH is hot on its heels). Until next time.