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Film Noir: The Dark Side of Cinema XIX [Dark City / No Man of Her Own / Beware, My Lovely]

Directed by William Dieterle, Mitchell Leisen, Harry Horner

Release: 1950
Runtime: 273
Country: U.S.
Language: English

This collection features three mood-drenched classics of noir. DARK CITY (1950) – A Tense, Tough Drama of Underworld Violence and Revenge! After losing his company’s $5,000 cashier’s check in a crooked card game, a stranger in Chicago commits suicide. The other gamblers—including Danny Haley, played by steely screen legend Charlton Heston (Touch of Evil) in his Hollywood debut—worry about the dangers of cashing the check, but this soon becomes the least of their concerns when the head of the group is found hanged. Police Captain Garvey (Dean Jagger, Pursued) concludes the hanging to be a case of homicide and discovers that the stranger had a mentally deranged brother (Mike Mazurki, Murder, My Sweet) who is out for vengeance. Fran (Lizabeth Scott, Pitfall), a torch singer who is desperately in love with Danny, begs him to run away with her before it’s too late. This stunningly cynical morality tale also features the stars of TV’s Dragnet 1967, Jack Webb and Harry Morgan, as Danny’s gambling partners. Directed by the dynamic Willam Dieterle (Portrait of Jennie, Rope of Sand) and bathed in black-and-white by cinematographer Victor Milner (The General Died at Dawn). NO MAN OF HER OWN (1950) – Every Door Closed Against Her…A Woman Faces the Age-Old Problem of Her Sex! The incandescent Barbara Stanwyck (Double Indemnity, The Strange Love of Martha Ivers) shines as a woman torn between a comfortable lie and the painful truth in this heart-wrenching noir classic. Helen Ferguson (Stanwyck), penniless, pregnant and dumped by her slimy boyfriend Steve (Lyle Bettger, Union Station), assumes the identity of a pregnant woman who was killed in a train crash. Eventually Helen’s sordid past catches up to her when Steve arrives demanding money to keep her true identity a secret from the man who loves her (John Lund, Night Has a Thousand Eyes). Gorgeously shot by cinematographer Daniel L. Fapp (The Big Clock, The Great Escape) and directed by Hollywood ace Mitchell Leisen (Death Takes a Holiday, Murder at the Vanities), this pitch-black masterpiece of harrowing melodrama was adapted from the book I Married a Dead Man by crime-writing king Cornell Woolrich (The Chase, Rear Window). BEWARE, MY LOVELY (1952) – Trapped by a Man Beyond Control! Screen heavyweights Ida Lupino (Woman in Hiding) and Robert Ryan (Odds Against Tomorrow) square off in this stylish and atmospheric thriller. Wealthy widow Helen Gordon (Lupino) hires drifter Howard Wilton (Ryan) as a handyman to do chores around her rambling mansion. What she doesn’t know: Howard Wilton is insane. Insecure and paranoid, Wilton thinks everyone, including Helen, is against him. He suffers from memory lapses and extreme mood swings. She’s soon a prisoner in her own home after Wilton locks the doors and tears out the telephone. His mood swings from violence to complacency but after Helen gets a message to the police via a telephone repairman, she finds he is still in the house. Beware, My Lovely is a spine-chilling suspense story shot by cinematographer George E. Diskant (On Dangerous Ground), written by noir specialist Mel Dinelli (The Spiral Staircase, House by the River) and helmed by noted art director Harry Horner (The Heiress, The Hustler).

Publish Date : 2024-05-21