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Image Credit: Doris Day, Steve Cochran, Ginger Rogers in Storm Warning (1951)

Join us for a new decade of rarely shown crime dramas from the ’40s and ’50s.

Discuss the casts, directors, novels and pulp stories.

  • Introduction to Film Noir
    Scenes from China, Across the Pacific, The Seventh Victim, The Big Clock, Red Light, House of Strangers, Specter of the Rose, I Walk Alone, The Underworld Story, Crime Wave, Seconds, The Long Goodbye, Night Moves, Kansas City and Le Boucher.
  • Johnny Apollo (1940)
    Tyrone Power is the son of an imprisoned Wall Street embezzler in Henry Hathaway’s prophetic proto-noir with Dorothy Lamour, Lloyd Nolan and Edward Arnold.
  • The Locket (1946)
    Could sweet Laraine Day be a sociopathic murderer? Her favorite career role—opposite Robert Mitchum—is a complex flashbacks-within-flashbacks puzzler.
  • Fallen Angel (1945)
    Otto Preminger (Laura, Angel Face) directs Linda Darnell as a trampy, scheming California waitress, in the slickly absorbing noir based on Mary Holland’s Blonde Baggage.
  • Rope of Sand (1949)
    Burt Lancaster’s eighth and final noir, with newcomer Corinne Calvet plus the Casablanca boys (Paul Henreid, Claude Rains, Peter Lorre) in a twisty diamond hunt.
  • Union Station (1950)
    Kidnappers Lyle Bettger and Jan Sterling hold a blind girl for ransom in underground catacombs, frantically pursued by cops William Holden and Barry Fitzgerald.
  • Blowing Wild (1953)
    Gary Cooper and Anthony Quinn, digging for oil in Mexico, both trapped by femme fatale Barbara Stanwyck, in this sweaty hybrid noir that’s part Sierra Madre, part Double Indemnity.
  • Black Legion (1937) / Storm Warning (1951)
    Ku Klux Klan double-feature dynamite: First Bogart in the proto-noir Black Legion, then Doris Day, Ginger Rogers and Ronald Reagan in the lost noir shocker, Storm Warning.

Brief Bio

Kurt Brokaw is Associate Teaching Professor at The New School and senior film critic of The Independent.

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