DARK CITY (1950)
1950, Paramount, 98 min, USA, Dir: William Dieterle

The murder of a fellow grifter following a fixed poker game leads a small-time gambler (Charlton Heston, in his feature debut) to track down a psychopathic killer bent on revenge. The complex tale, ranging from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, is evocatively directed by William Dieterle (PORTRAIT OF JENNIE, THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME) and features film noir’s favorite throaty thrush, lovely Lizabeth Scott. Co-starring Viveca Lindfors, Dean Jagger, Don Defore, Ed Begley and Harry Morgan.


KHARTOUM
1966, Park Circus/MGM, 136 min, UK, Dir: Basil Dearden, Eliot Elisofon

Charlton Heston stars as British general Charles “Chinese” Gordon, who is sent to defend the British Empire in the Sudan during a violent uprising led by jihad-hungry Laurence Olivier. This is one of the most literate (with an Oscar-nominated screenplay by Robert Ardrey) and visually sumptuous of all 1960s epics, with vibrant colors and spectacular action sequences courtesy of ace craftsman Basil Dearden.


MIDWAY
1976, Universal, 132 min, USA, Dir: Jack Smight

The June 1942 battle near the Pacific atoll of Midway was a decisive one in World War II, and this exciting epic faithfully recounts the gambits, mistakes and lucky breaks that tipped the war toward U.S. victory. Seemingly every star in Hollywood reported for duty on MIDWAY; Charlton Heston plays a captain whose pilot son is involved with a Japanese-American woman, while Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, Glenn Ford, James Coburn, Hal Holbrook and Cliff Robertson are among the naval brass conducting the campaign. John Williams’ stirring score offers some of the epic sweep he would bring to STAR WARS a year later.


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