Film Noir and Neo Noir on TCM: January 2020

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Wednesday, January 1, 9:30 PM – Thursday, January 2, 3:00 AM

Late Era Gangster Noir Triple Bill

9:30 PM

THE RISE AND FALL OF LEGS DIAMOND (1960): In this late era gangster noir, a small-time thief (Ray Danton) kills his way to the top of the New York rackets. Dir. Budd Boetticher

11:30 PM

(1961): Despite a decent upbringing by devout Jewish parents, Arnold Rothstein (David Janssen) is destined for a life of crime. This film depicts his rise and fall in the gambling rackets of 20's New York. Star Jansen is ably supported by Mickey Rooney, Jack Carson, Keenan Wynn and William Demarest Dir. Joseph M. Newman

1:30 AM

MAD DOG COLL (1961): In 1920's New York City, young Vincent Coll (John Davis Chandler), the product of an unhappy home dominated by a savagely sadistic father grows up to become "Mad Dog" Coll, the most vicious killer in all of gangland, hated and sought by both the police and rival mobsters. Dir. Burt Balaban

Thursday, January 2, 7:15 AM

THE LETTER (1940): Bette Davis gives a masterful performance as a married woman claiming self-defense in the murder of a fellow Britisher on her husband's rubber plantation in Malay. This succeeds both as a film noir and an incisive look into colonialism. Herbert Marshall gives a deeply empathetic performance as the loving husband. Watch for Victor Sen Yung as a solicitous lawyer's clerk. Based on a play by Somerset Maugham, dramatized from his own short story. Nominated for seven Oscars: Best Picture; Best Actress in a Leading Role, Bette Davis; Best Actor in a Supporting Role, James Stephenson; Best Director, William Wyler; Best Cinematography, Black-and-White,Tony Gaudio; Best Film Editing, Warren Low; Best Music, Original Score, Max Steiner. Dir. William Wyler

Thursday, January 2, 9:00 AM

SUSPICION (1941): A handsome gambler Johnny Aysgarth (Cary Grant) pursues the shy and wealthy Lina McLaidlaw (Joan Fontaine). He courts and marries her. After the honeymoon she discovers unsettling things about his character. She becomes increasingly suspicious of him when Johnny's friend and business partner, Beaky (Nigel Bruce) dies mysteriously. Based on Anthony Berkeley Cox's novel After the Fact. Dir. Alfred Hitchcock



Saturday, January 4, 9:00 PM &
Sunday, January 5, 7:00 AM

FNF Prez Eddie Muller presents

THE BIG SLEEP (1946): In Howard Hawks' clever and sophisticated adaptation of Raymond Chandler's novel, private eye Philip Marlowe's (Humphrey Bogart) investigates the involvement of an opium addled (and nymphomaniacal) society girl (Martha Vickers) in the murder of a pornographer. He also must determine if her sister (Lauren Bacall) is helping or hindering him. Dir. Howard Hawks

Saturday, January 4, 11:15 PM – Sunday, January 5, 3:00 AM

Film Noir Double Bill

11:15 PM

KISS OF DEATH (1947): A psychotic gangster (Richard Widmark) torments a small-time crook (the strapping Victor Mature) who has given state's evidence against him in this classic New York City crime drama. Widmark gives as career making performance as the giggling menace. Dir: Henry Hathaway

1:00 AM

TOUCH OF EVIL (1958): Orson Welles' masterpiece about a narcotics agent (Charlton Heston) who unintentionally put his wife (Janet Leigh) in grave danger when he investigates a crooked cop (Orson Welles). Utterly fantastic supporting performance by Marlene Dietrich as a Mexican Gypsy whore- no, really, I mean it. Dir. Orson Welles

Monday, January 6, 10:15 AM

HUNT THE MAN DOWN (1950): A lawyer (Gig Young) uncovers secrets behind a decade-old murder case when he attempts to exonerate a convicted man by hunting down the six eye-witnesses to the crime who dispersed years earlier. Dir. George Archainbaud

Monday, January 6, 8:00 PM

THE MALTESE FALCON (1941): How do I love this movie, let me count the ways… In arguably the first, and greatest, film noir, hard-boiled detective Sam Spade (Humphrey Bogart) gets caught up in the deadly search for a priceless statue. Along the way he tangles with a murderous liar (Mary Astor), a foppish thug (Peter Lorre) and an obese mastermind (Sydney Greenstreet). Director John Huston brilliantly adapted it from the Dashiell Hammett novel and earned an Oscar nomination for Best Writing, Screenplay. The film also garnered nominations for Best Picture and for Sydney Greenstreet, in his film debut, Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Dir. John Huston

Tuesday, January 7, 1:30 AM
Friday, January 10, 3:00 AM

ACT OF VIOLENCE (1949): An embittered veteran (Robert Ryan) tracks down Frank R. Enley, a POW camp informer (Van Heflin) now a respected member of his community. Mary Astor steals the film as the boozy bar fly and prostitute trying to help Enley. Dir. Fred Zinnemann

Wednesday, January 8, 9:15 PM – Thursday, January 9, 1:00 AM

Gangster Noir Double Bill

9:15 PM

SCARFACE (1932): This proto-noir helmed by Howard Hawks chronicles the rise and fall of gangster (Paul Muni), inspired by Al Capone and the Borgias. This film shot supporting player George Raft into stardom, but Ann Dvorak steals the film as Tony's sister and incestuous object of his desire. Watch for Boris Karloff in as an ill-fated crook. Screenplay badly remade by Brian De Palma in the 1980s. Dir. Howard Hawks

11:00 PM

AL CAPONE (1959): Rod Steiger stars as Al Capone in this depiction of the rise and fall of Prohibition Era Chicago's most notorious racketeer. Dir. Richard Wilson

Thursday, January 9, 5:00 PM

THE PHENIX CITY STORY (1955): Based on a true story, two crusading lawyers, a father and son (John McIntire and Richard Kiley), take on the corrupt machine running a Southern town at great personal cost. Dir. Phil Karlson

Thursday, January 9, 7:45 PM

GASLIGHT (1944): A newlywed (Ingrid Bergman) fears she's going mad when strange things start happening at the family mansion where her aunt was murdered ten years earlier. Joseph Cotten stars as the handsome stranger who aids her. Charles Boyer stars as the handsome husband who terrorizes her. Angela Lansbury plays the pretty maid who may be in league with Boyer. Based on Patrick Hamilton's Angel Street. The film won two Oscars, Best Actress in a Leading Role for Ingrid Bergman and Best Art Direction-Interior Decoration, Black-and-White for Cedric Gibbons, William Ferrari, Edwin B. Willis, Paul Huldschinsky, and earned five more nominations. Dir. George Cukor

Friday, January 10, 3:00 AM

ARMORED CAR ROBBERY (1950): In this awesome little action packed noir, a police officer, Charles McGraw in a rare outing as a good guy, tries to find half a million dollars stolen by gangsters. Dir. Richard Fleischer


Saturday, January 11, 9:00 PM & Sunday, January 12, 7:00 AM

FNF Prez Eddie Muller presents

THE BIG NIGHT (1951): George LeMain (John Barrymore Jr.) "celebrates" his 16th birthday by witnessing his father (Preston Foster) stoically absorb a dreadful beating from a mysterious local operator. The youngster seeks answers— and revenge—during an all-night odyssey through downtown L.A., making this a truly noir coming-of-age tale. Co-screenwriters Hugo Butler and Ring Lardner Jr. adapted Stanley Ellin's novel Dreadful Summit. Dir. Joseph Losey

Sunday, January 12, 8:30 AM
Wednesday, January 22, 4:30 AM

A WOMAN'S FACE (1941): The soon to be queen of the noirs, Joan Crawford, starred in this suspenseful drama as a facially scarred blackmailer who's given a new outlook on life after plastic surgery. Can she adjust to a normal life and stop her ex-accomplice's nefarious plan to murder his nephew? Dir. George Cukor

Tuesday, January 14, 12:00 AM

THE STRANGER (1946): A small-town schoolteacher (Loretta Young) encounters a determined investigator (Edward G. Robinson) who suspects her new husband (Orson Welles) may be an escaped Nazi war criminal. Can he convince her before it's too late? Dir. Orson Welles

Tuesday, Jan 14, 7:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Film Noir Triple Feature

7:30 AM

RACE STREET (1948): In this San Francisco based noir, an ex-bookie Dan Ganin (George Raft) tries to go straight by opening a nightclub with his singing sister (Gale Robbins) as the main attraction, but soon finds himself seeking vengeance against a protection racket syndicate after they kill his friend (Harry Morgan). Noir stalwart William Bendix plays the cop and childhood friend trying to keep Dan in one piece while he's on his rampage. Dir. Edwin L. Marin

9:00 AM

GAMBLING HOUSE (1951): A gambler (Victor Mature) faces deportation after he agrees to take the rap for a shooting. While awaiting his fate, he comes under the influence of a beautiful do-gooder (Terry Moore) murder. Dir. Ted Tetzlaff

10:30 AM

THE BIG STEAL (1950): Seduction and murder follow the theft of an Army payroll. An army lieutenant (Robert Mitchum) accused of robbery pursues the real thief on a frantic chase through Mexico aided by the thief's ex-girlfriend (Jane Greer). Dir. Don Siegel

Tuesday, January 14, 8:15 PM

THE BREAKING POINT (1950): This film faithfully retells the story of Hemingway's To Have and Have Not. Charter-boat skipper Harry Morgan (John Garfield) will do anything to save his boat from creditors, even smuggle illegal aliens. Things get ugly when he attempts to double cross a gangster that hires him to spirit away a group of thieves hot off a racetrack heist. Patricia Neal co-stars as the sultry moll who tries to seduce the married Morgan. Dir. Michael Curtiz

Saturday, January 18, 9:00 AM

LAURA (1944): In this film noir based on the Vera Caspary novel, dedicated detective Mark McPherson (Dana Andrews) investigates the death of the beautiful Laura (Gene Tierney), brutally gunned down at the door of her flat. As he interviews her friends and lovers, a complicated portrait of her emerges and he finds himself falling for the deceased girl. Clifton Webb and Vincent Price give outstanding performances as two bickering rivals for Laura's affections. Joseph LaShelle won the Oscar for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White for his work on the film. Dir. Otto Preminger


Saturday, January 18, 9:15 PM & Sunday, January 19, 7:00 AM

FNF Prez Eddie Muller presents

THE CAPTIVE CITY (1952): John Director Robert Wise and director of photography Lee Garmes capture the essence of Senator Estes Kefauver's national crusade (he narrates the film's epilogue) against organized crime in authentic "docu-noir" style. John Forsythe stars as a crusading newspaper editor who uncovers a sinister gambling syndicate whose corrupting influence renders the entire city helpless. Screenwriter Alvin Josephy based his script on his own experiences as a reporter uncovering organized crime in Santa Monica after World War II. For realism, Wise shot the whole film on location, using actual interiors and exteriors in Reno, Nevada. Dir. Robert Wise

Sunday, January 19, 9:00 AM – 2:45 PM

Mysterious Man Triple Bill

9:00 AM

BORN TO KILL (1947): This utterly bizarre film noir details the torrid affair between a killer (Lawrence Tierney) and the narcissistic woman (Claire Trevor) who witnessed his crime. He marries her sister and things really heat up between the amoral pair. Dir. Robert Wise

11:00 AM

THE THIRD MAN (1949): This fantastic film about a naive American, Joseph Cotten, investigating the death of his friend, Orson Welles, in post-World War II Vienna never loses its impact no matter how many times you watch it. "Like the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock". Director of Photography Robert Krasker won the Oscar for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White for the film. The film also garnered Oscar nominations, Carol Reed for Best Director and Oswald Hafenrichter for Best Film Editing. Dir. Carol Reed

1:00 PM

THE THIN MAN (1934): Dashiell Hammett's urbane but fun loving sleuths Nick and Nora Charles, along with their pup Asta, investigate the disappearance of an inventor in this classic blend of laughs and suspense. Shot in just two weeks by director Woody "One-Shot'' Van Dyke and cinematographer James Wong Howe, this gem set the gold standard for the sophisticated comedy—inspiring five sequels as well as countless inferior imitations. Van Dyke previously directed Myrna Loy and William Powell in Manhattan Melodrama and spotted the terrific chemistry of their off screen banter between takes. He insisted on casting the pair as Hammett's hard-drinking super-couple and the glamorous pair became one of the movies' great romantic teams. Shot by the legendary cinematographer James Wong Howe. The film garnered four Oscar nominations, Best Picture, Best Actor in a Leading Role for Powell, Best Director for W.S. Van Dyke. Best Writing, Adaptation for Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett. Dir. Woody Van Dyke

Sunday, January 19, 7:30 PM

THE TWO MRS. CARROLLS (1947): A sociopathic artist (Humphrey Bogart) decides that he would like to murder his wife in order to marry a flirtatious younger woman (Alexis Smith). However, the current Mrs. Carroll is Barbara Stanwyck, so you know this isn't going to be so easy, despite the fact that Babs is both uncharacteristically slow on the uptake and rather wimpy in this one. Dir. Peter Godfrey

Monday, January 20, 3:45 AM

ODDS AGAINST TOMORROW (1959): Desperation forces a racist ex-con, the always great and always scary Robert Ryan, and a black gambler (Harry Belafonte) to plan a bank robbery together. Loads of tension ensues. Gloria Grahame and Shelly Winters co-star. Dir. Robert Wise

Monday, January 20, 11:00 PM

THE TALL TARGET (1951): In this film noir cloaked as historical fiction, a determined detective (Dick Powell) tries to prevent the assassination of President-elect Abraham Lincoln during the train ride to his inauguration. It's helmed by legendary noir director Anthony Mann and shot by Paul Vogel, the cinematographer responsible for Lady in the Lake's first person P.O.V. Dir. Anthony Mann

Wednesday, January 22, 11:00 PM

PETE KELLY'S BLUES (1955): Ex-doughboy turned jazz musician Pet Kelly (Jack Webb) leads a quartet playing at a Kansas City speakeasy during the Roaring 20s. The quartet gets crossed up with a gangster (Edmond O'Brien) and his alcoholic girlfriend (Peggy Lee). Cynical Kelly finds that he has to take a stand. Ella Fitzgerald makes a memorable cameo as singer Maggie Jacks. Look for Jayne Mansfield as a cigarette girl. Dir. Jack Webb

Thursday, January 23, 7:00 PM

BODY AND SOUL (1947): A young boxer, played by the original method actor turned movie star John Garfield, slugs his way out of the slums only to fall prey to organized crime. Shot by the legendary cinematographer James Wong Howe. Dir. Robert Rossen


Saturday, January 25, 9:00 PM & Sunday, January 26, 7:00 AM

FNF Prez Eddie Muller presents

TRY AND GET ME! (1951) The true story of a shocking 1934 kidnapping and murder in San Jose provided the inspiration for one of the most compelling and unjustly neglected masterpieces of film noir. Ex-GI Howard Tyler (Frank Lovejoy), struggling to support his family, meets flashy hoodlum Jerry Slocum (Lloyd Bridges), who eases the gullible Howard into a lucrative life of crime. Their escapade turns dark and desperate when Jerry takes hostage the son of a wealthy local businessman. One of the last films made in the U.S. by blacklisted writer/director Cy Endfield before he relocated to England, Try and Get Me! (originally released as The Sound of Fury) has been restored by the Film Noir Foundation so that it may be experienced in its original form by future generations and assume its rightful status as one of the great films of its era. Dir. Cy Endfield

Saturday, January 25, 11:00 PM- Sunday, January 26, 3:00 AM

Cy Endfield Noir Double

11:00 PM

THE UNDERWORLD STORY (1950): The classic noir stars Dan Duryea as Mike Reese, an unethical journalist turned newspaper publisher who becomes involved in creating the news and not just writing it when there's a murder case involving another publisher (Herbert Marshall). Mike starts out doing what's best for him, but when an innocent African-American maid is framed, he starts to waver in pursuing his self-interests. Dir. Cy Endfield

1:00 AM

HELL DRIVERS (1957): An ex-con (Stanley Baker) trying to go straight takes a job driving for a corrupt trucking company, where the bosses pit the drivers against each other in a dangerous competition that leads to higher profits and . . . death! Peggy Cummins is the saucy secretary who flirts her way through an array of up-and-coming stars—Patrick McGoohan. Sean Connery and Herbert Lom. A gear-grinding masterpiece! Dir. Cy Endfield

Thursday, Jan 30, 6:15 AM — 1:45 PM

Plastic Surgery Noir Quadruple

6:15 AM

DARK PASSAGE (1947): Adapted from a story by David Goodis, this noir follows convicted wife murderer Vincent Parry's (Humphrey Bogart) escape from jail and subsequent hunt for the real killer of his wife. Sympathetic stranger Irene (Lauren Bacall) encounters him during his jail break and aids him. Agnes Moorehead steals the show as Irene's shrewish friend who knew Vincent and his wife prior to the murder. Dir. Delmer Daves

8:15 AM

NORA PRENTISS (1947): In this noir tale, a decorous doctor becomes obsessed with a beautiful nightclub singer, (Ann Sheridan). Interestingly, uber straight man Kent Smith, best known as Irina's husband in Val Lewton's Cat People (1942) (Dir. Jacques Tourner) gets the chance to play a man who will stop at nothing to possess the object of his desire. Dir. Vincent Sherman

10:15 AM

HOLLOW TRIUMPH (1948): In this iconic noir, an ex-con (Paul Henreid) whose "last heist" just went wrong, goes on the lam and poses as a psychiatrist. He falls for the psychiatrist's lover and secretary (Joan Bennett) and then things go awry. The great John Alton serves as cinematographer. As we like to say at the FNF, "It's a bitter little world." Dir. Steve Sekely

1:45 AM

A WOMAN'S FACE (En kvinnas ansikte) (1938): Legendary star Ingrid Bergman, pre-Hollywood, plays a disfigured gang boss who goes against her criminal cohorts in a last chance at redemption. Swedish with English subtitles. Dir. Gustaf Molander

Friday, January 31, 7:45 AM

SO LONG AT THE FAIR (1950): In this period piece Brit Noir, a woman (Jean Simmons) searches for her missing brother in Paris when he and the hotel room he was staying in disappear. Of course, no one else believes that he existed in the first place. Dir. Terence Fisher

TCM's Gangster Noir triple bill starts with The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond on January 1

John Davis Chandler stars in Mad Dog Coll on January 2

Cary Grant, Joan Fontaine and Hitch on the set of Suspicion screening January 2

Eddie Muller presents The Big Sleep on the January 4 and 5 edition of NOIR ALLEY

Victor Mature v. Richard Widmark in Kiss of Death screening January 4

Orson Welles' Touch of Evil on January 5

Hunt the Man Down screens January 6

Bogie and Elisha Cook, Jr. in The Maltese Falcon on January 6

Paul Muni and Anne Dvorak in Scarface on January 8

Phil Karlson's The Phenix River Story on January 9

Charles Boyer and Ingrid Bergman in Gaslight on January 9

Adele Jergens in Armored Car Robbery on January 10

John Barrymore, Jr. stars in Joseph Losey's The Big Night on the NOIR ALLEY, presented b y Eddie Muller on January 11 and 12

Joan Crawford stars in A Woman's Face on January 12 and 22

George Raft stars in Race Street on January 14

Victor Mature and Terry Moore in Gambling House on January 14

Patricia Neal and John Garfield in The Breaking Point on January 14

Gene Tierney and Vincent Price in Laura on January 18

Eddie Muller presents The Captive City on NOIR ALLEY January 18 and 19

Claire Trevor, Lawrence Tierney and Audrey Long in Born To Kill on January 19

The Third Man screens January 19

Barbara Stanwyck and Humphrey Bogart star in The Two Mrs. Carrolls on January 19

Sidney Poitier and Robert Ryan on the set of Odds Against Tomorrow on January 20

Dick Powell in The Tall Target screens January 20

Jack Webb, Edmond O'Brien and Peggy Lee in Pete Kelly's Blues on January 22

John Garfield and Hazel Brooks in Body and Soul on January 23

Eddie Muller presents Try and Get Me! on NOIR ALLEY January 25 and 26

Dan Duryea stars in The Underworld Story on January 25

Peggy Cummins and Stanley Baker in Hell Drivers on January 26

Bacall and Bogie star in Dark Passage on January 30

Kent Smith and Ann Sheridan in Nora Prentiss on January 30

Paul Henreid and Joan Bennett in Hollow Triumph on January 30

Jean Simmons and Dirk Bogarde in So Long at the Fair on January 31


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