Noir City 5
Friday, August 23rd – Thursday, August 29th, 2013
Join us for the 5th sensational edition of NOIR CITY: CHICAGO as the Music Box teams up with the Film Noir Foundation for a festival that combines extraordinary rarities with revivals of recognized classics!
directed by Cy Endfield in English starring Stanley Baker, Herbert Lom, Peggy Cummins
Join us for the opening night of the Noir City 5 Festival with this gear-grinding masterpiece!
directed by Cy Endfield in English starring Frank Lovejoy, Lloyd Bridges
The true story of a shocking 1934 kidnapping and murder provided the inspiration for one of the most compelling—and unjustly neglected—masterpieces of noir.
directed by Henry Hathaway
“Niagara Falls and Marilyn Monroe—The Two Most Electrifying Sights in the World!” screamed the studio’s ads for this sexually charged Technicolor noir. Monroe is a too-hot-to-handle wife who enflames her husband’s jealousy during a vacation at the famous falls . . . with murderous results. Joseph Cotten, Jean Peters, and one of the world’s majestic natural wonders all play second fiddle to Marilyn, whose larger-than-life allure still leaps off the screen 60 years after this film was originally released.
directed by Lewis Allen starring Lizbeth Scott, Mary Astor, Burt Lancaster
We’re not exactly sure how to classify this movie, except to say that it’s outrageously gay. The homoerotic undercurrent present in many noir films swims deliriously close to the surface in this lush crime melodrama, Will luscious Liz Scott tear apart the special bond shared by gangsters John Hodiak and Wendell Corey? Could Mary Astor really be her Mom, with all that kissing? Just how clueless is beefcake sheriff Burt Lancaster? Must be seen to be believed—and, of course, glorious costumes by Edith Head!
directed by John Stahl starring Cornell Wilde, Gene Tierney, Vincent Price
Don’t let the vivid Technicolor fool you—this big budget melodrama is black at the core, as perverse and malignant as any film got in the 1940s. A novelist (Cornell Wilde) meets gorgeous Ellen Berent (Gene Tierney) on a train. They fall in love and marry—and soon there is hell to pay. In an Oscar-nominated performance, Tierney is the embodiment of a distinctly feminine psychopathology. Featuring the majestic cinematography of Oscar-winner Leon Shamroy. With Jeanne Crain and Vincent Price.
directed by Richard Fleischer starring Victor Mature, Sylvia Sidney, Lee Marvin
Film noir gets the lavish mid-Fifties treatment—vibrant color and Cinemascope—in this adaptation of W. B. Heath’s classic caper novel. Three strangers arrive in a small town with a plan to rob the local bank come the weekend. Their lives unexpectedly entwine with a number of the town’s residents during the run-up to the robbery. Victor Mature and Sylvia Sidney head a terrific cast that features Lee Marvin, Steven McNally and J. Carroll Naish as the criminal trio. It’s a ’50s soap opera with a crime thriller spine, and a vivid time-capsule of mid-Century Americana.
directed by Billy Wilder in English starring Gloria Swanson, William Holden, Erich von Stroheim
Hack screenwriter Joe Gillis (William Holden) is coaxed with lavish gifts into writing a script to revive the faded career of silent-film star Norma Desmond (Gloria Swanson), who lives in total obscurity revisiting the past with her former partner-turned-butler Max (Erich von Stroheim). But Norma’s delusions have a dangerous edge, and Joe’s not exactly a careful man.
directed by Hugo Haas starring Hugo Haas, Cleo Moore
When megalomaniacal film director Walter Darman (Hugo Haas) fires no-talent actress Sherry Stewart (Cleo Moore) from his latest artistic opus, the shamed sexpot schemes revenge!
directed by Alfred Werker in English starring Joan Leslie, Richard Basehart
Consider it the film noir version of It’s a Wonderful Life.
directed by John Reinhardt in English starring Dan Duryea, Mary Anderson, Gordon Gebert
Noir favorite Dan Duryea gives perhaps his greatest performance as a down-on-his-luck alcoholic in Los Angeles who gets word that his wife and daughter have been in a car accident in Chicago. As he waits by the phone for news of their fate, all manner of circumstance conspires to torture him even further, from bill collectors to the phone company to a “helpful” little boy. A minor-key noir-stained classic, made memorable by Duryea’s deeply affecting performance.
directed by John Reinhardt in English starring Lee Tracy, Don Castle, Julie Bishop
Be here for the resurrection of a lost B classic, featuring one of the wildest flashback devices ever!
directed by Jules Dassin in English starring Richard Widmark, Gene Tierney, Googie Withers
Perhaps the most baroque and bleak film noir of them all.
directed by Robert Hamer in English starring Googie Withers, Edward Chapman, John McCallum
In the seminal British noir—a precursor to the “”Kitchen Sink” films of the late 1950s—an escaped convict hides out in London’s Bethnal Green, throwing the lives of several downtrodden Londoners into turmoil—especially his now-married former flame (Googie Withers), who hides him in her bedroom. An extraordinary depiction of postwar London, evocatively rendered by cinematographer Douglas Slocombe and director Hamer.
directed by John Farrow in English starring Edward G. Robinson, Gail Russell, John Lund
A lost noir returns to the big screen! In this supernaturally-tinged noir, Edward G. Robinson stars as a man cursed with the ability to predict the future—can he keep Fate from destroying those close to him? John Farrow, a director at his most stylish in noir terrain, adapts from the novel by master of suspense Cornell Woolrich.
Co-starring Gail Russell and John Lund.
Universal Pictures struck this new print exclusively for Noir City! Not on DVD!
directed by John Farrow in English starring Ray Milland, Audrey Totter, Thomas Mitchell
This brilliant Faustian tale of soul corruption has campaigning politician Thomas Mitchell making a pact with Lucifer (Ray Milland), which includes the temptations of to delectable devil-doll Audrey Totter, whose got her own issues with the mysterious Mr. Beal. The fabulous and fabulist screenplay by Jonathan Latimer is rendered by Farrow (The Big Clock, Where Danger Lives) in high noir style.
A true rarity, brought back by Universal in a 35mm print exclusively for Noir City! NOT ON DVD!
directed by Jack Hively in English starring Burgess Meredith, Claire Trevor, Louise Platt
Finally! The very first adaptation of a Woolrich suspense novel returns to the big screen in a brand new 35mm print! A man loses his memory after being struck by a falling beam; as he struggles to piece his life together he realizes he’s lived the preceding year as another person! Is it all a tortured twist of fate—or a sinister, calculated plot? Burgess Meredith stars as the beleaguered amnesia victim, with noir stalwart Claire Trevor providing support—or is she?
Special thanks to Universal Pictures for this new 35mm preservation print. NOT ON DVD!
directed by Douglas Sirk starring Claudette Colbert, Don Ameche, George Coulouris, Robert Cummings
A film noir directed by Douglas Sirk, produced by Buddy Rogers, and presented by Mary Pickford? Nope, you’re not dreaming, but lovely and wealthy Alison Courtland (Claudette Colbert) is. She’s been sleepwalking at night and, according to her seemingly attentive husband Richard (Don Ameche), taking potshots at him. During the days she’s hallucinating about a malevolent psychiatrist (George Coulouris). But a handsome new acquaintance, Bruce Elcott (Robert Cummings) believes in her sanity and suspects her husband of foul play. Can he convince Alison before it’s too late? Featuring Keye Luke, Raymond Burr, Queenie Smith and Hazel Brooks.