CRY OF THE CITY
1948, 20th Century Fox, 95 min, USA, Dir: Robert Siodmak

Perhaps the best realized of director Robert Siodmak’s films noir indelibly relates the enduring theme (based on Henry Helseth’s novel The Chair for Martin Rome) of neighborhood pals who tread divergent courses. Victor Mature becomes a lawman, Richard Conte goes crooked. The two square off all across Manhattan with tragic results. Siodmak eschewed the semi-documentary style then in vogue at Fox creating instead a vivid, Expressionistic urban landscape that ideally suited this mythic mid-20th-century tale of good and evil. Co-starring Shelley Winters, Fred Clark and that Amazonian nightmare, Hope Emerson.


HAZARD
1948, Paramount [Universal], 95 min, USA, Dir: George Marshall

More a comedy-adventure than a straight noir, but we welcome any chance to see Paulette Goddard in her prime! She plays a gambler who antes herself up as the prize in a game against a professional card shark (Fred Clark). Upon losing, she takes it on the lam, pursued cross-country by a private dick (Macdonald Carey) hired to haul her back to the altar. Surrounded by a wonderful cast (Stanley Clements, Percy Helton, Frank Faylen, Taylor Holmes, Charles McGraw), Goddard shows why she was one of the most luminous and charismatic stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age. Not on DVD!


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