Jean Peters, Lizabeth Scott, In recognition of that, we’ve compiled a list of the best film noir movies of all time — not only from a critical perspective but also by their influence on the genre and beyond. Lift to the Scaffold. William Holden, | From Nicholas Musuraca's chiaroscuro cinematography ("It was so dark on set, you didn't know who else was there half the time," said Greer) to Roy Webb's plangent score and the guarded, electrifying performances, it's nothing short of a noir masterclass. | Robert Arthur, | Rhonda Fleming, Approved Edward G. Robinson, | John Williams, Votes: Shot in 5 days for $50,000. Susan Harrison, Jane Wyman, Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller. | | Director: MOVIESTORE 42,038 | Stars: Two undercover agents infiltrate a drug-smuggling ring in Mexico, but neither is aware of the other's identity. It’s a standard-bearer for a film noir list. Only the fiercest concentration will keep you on top of the head-spinning plot, and in fact the plot reportedly defeated its stars and director while they were actually shooting, cutting, reshooting and arguing about it. Stars: | | Gross: Thelma Ritter, | | Passed | | James Stewart, Louis Calhern, Votes: It’s another John Huston film, so it includes his typical directorial flourishes, including a painstaking seven-minute long scene of complex camera moves. Michael Curtiz © 2020 Collider Cryptomedia, Inc. All Rights Reserved. | The Big Sleep (1946) - Howard Hawks Purists say that classic film noir concluded in 1959, making Touch of Evil one of the last installments of the genre. Farley Granger, A psychopath forces a tennis star to comply with his theory that two strangers can get away with murder. William Talman, Passed Orson Welles, | Film noir loves its naming conventions. Michael Curtiz The aura of crime has seeped into every cell of ordinary behaviour: the city officials are corrupt, the night man (Dennis Weaver) needs a rest home, and the gang that come to the motel to get Susie are one of the first warnings of drugs in American movies. That’s particularly true when the media gets involved. Huston’s work received praise for fusing the intellect of a mystery novel with the grit of '40s Hollywood. 356,949 Nightmare Alley is circus noir. Robert Walker, Internet Archive version here. Stars: All that said, its proper film noir, and among the best film noir movies of all time. Nicholas Ray's astonishingly self-assured, lyrical directorial debut opens with title cards and lush orchestrations over shots of a boy and a girl in rapturous mutual absorption: "This boy … and this gir … were never properly introduced … to the world we live in …" A shriek of horns suddenly obliterates all other sound – their shocked faces both turn toward the camera, and the title appears: They Live by Night. Stars: How far will she have to go to ingratiate herself with them? Stanwyck had been reluctant to take the role, confessing: "I was a little frightened of it." Ruth Roman, Fritz Lang Up to the top 10 film noir movies of all time now. Director: (1954) Humphrey Bogart stars as Sam Spade, the hard-boiled gumshoe ripped from Dashiell Hammett’s novel, while Mary Astor establishes the femme fatale model as Brigid O’Shaughnessy. John Huston Fred MacMurray, who had specialised largely in comedy until that point, was an inspired choice to play the big dope Walter Neff, who narrates the sorry mess in flashback, and wonders: "How could I have known that murder can sometimes smell like honeysuckle?" Jane Greer, 121,818 Gloria Grahame, There is a palpable charge in the air. 147,377 John Huston Many of the prototypical stories and much of the attitude of classic noir derive from the hardboiled school of crime fictionthat emerged in the … OUT Women played the femme fatale role brilliantly. A politically ambitious district attorney, unscrupulous tabloid journalists, and regional prejudice combine to charge a teacher with the murder of his student. Brian Donlevy, | However, she soon starts to have her doubts. Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery. The husband stays in hiding, and lets his wife be charged with conspiracy. It’s actually German cinematographers and directors like John F. Seitz and Fritz Lang that deserve the most credit for shaping the style. | When Laura Mansfield's father is killed by a delivery man, the police has few clues and the investigation drags on but Laura decides to find the killer on her own. Director: | Nicholas Ray, | | John Payne, A veteran British barrister must defend his client in a murder trial that has surprise after surprise. Joseph Calleia, Votes: Film criticism also shifted in the 40s and 50s to include more artful analysis of movies (suggestion: read some of the early 1940s film criticism from novelist James Agee when he started at Time in 1942; Agee was hugely influential to our big American critics of the 60s onward—like the Cahiers writers, and Pauline Kael and Roger Ebert.) | Vincent Price, Votes: Director: | It's set in Allied-occupied Vienna, where writer Holly Martins (Joseph Cotten) pitches up at the invitation of his old chum Harry Lime. Otto Wernicke, Votes: Stars: | $7.00M, Passed | Gross: 88 min Stanley Kubrick Film-Noir, Mystery, Thriller. Viewers not enamoured of the actor's somnambulant manner might take the latter title for a description of what it must be like to act alongside Mitchum. In a Lonely Place is all about the darkness that can befall creatives when they become desperate. Helen Walker. Film noir populated theaters at a significant time in history: the end of World War II. Edgar G. Ulmer "She can't be all bad — no one is," one character remarks of her. Crime, Drama, Film-Noir. | 1,150 Free Movies Online: Great Classics, Indies, Noir, Westerns, etc. | In a modern day rewatch though, the classic film noir plays differently. Bogart and Bacall virtually invented the subject with their droll, laconic dialogue. Police Chief Jim Fitzpatrick ruthlessly goes after organized crime and is prepared to use brutal and violent methods to fight it. | Gross: | George Sanders, 102 min Richard Quine Woody Allen declared it "the greatest movie ever made". $4.36M, PG Kirk Douglas, Michael Curtiz A major heist goes off as planned, but then double crosses, bad luck and solid police work cause everything to unravel. Director: | 103 min Lionel Barrymore, Approved Patricia Neal, BUILD Stars: | Mervyn LeRoy Edward G. Robinson, Stars: Gladys George, James Cagney, Richard Rosson In a manner that would come to be their stock-in-trade, the film is a cacophony of cross-purposes, in some ways a rehearsal for their breakout effort Fargo, which also depicts a nefarious plan gone wrong. (ALT) | | For more Philip Marlowe, check out Murder My Sweet (1944).
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