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Archive for April 7th, 2011

Director: John Huston

Producer: Arthur Hornblow Jr

Screenwriter: Ben Maddow and John Huston

Cinematographer: Harold Rosson

Music: Miklos Rozsa

Studio: MGM 1950

Main Acting: Sterling Hayden and Sam Jaffe

The caper or heist film is a very popular sub-genre of film noir. Here with John Huston’s 1950 examination of a bunch of crooks planning and then accomplishing a jewel robbery, we have one of the first of its kind. Since this movie would go on to influence so many other pictures with similar narratives, it would be criminal to understate its influence. This is a well-paced feature with a strong ensemble cast that runs for almost two hours. The A-picture running length does nothing to diminish its power. One of John Huston’s two or three best films in his long, and frankly, erratic career. It was also included in Warner Brothers Film Noir Classic Collection Volume One and is thankfully rather easy to locate and purchase.

The year 1950 was fruitful for film noir. In my humble opinion, it was probably the best year for the genre. So far in this countdown, The Asphalt Jungle has been joined by Panic In The Streets, Gun Crazy, and Where The Sidewalk Ends. Not to mention, multiple worthwhile selections that missed out of the top 50 and would have appeared if this were a top 100 list. (more…)

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