I WAS A SHOPLIFTER
1949, Universal, 74 min, USA, Dir: Charles Lamont

Cop Scott Brady agrees to go undercover to shadow shoplifter Mona Freeman, a judge’s daughter who has been coerced into working for a robbery ring run by the always entertaining Andrea King (SOUTHSIDE 1-1000). Her sinister sidekick is a looker named Pepe, played by 25-year-old Tony Curtis. Also keep your eyes peeled for noir tough guy Charles McGraw and a young Rock Hudson.


HE WALKED BY NIGHT
1948, Park Circus/MGM, 79 min, USA, Dir: Alfred L. Werker

A psychotic loner (Richard Basehart) uses his genius for electronics to commit robberies while evading the police. When he escalates to cop killer, L.A.’s finest (Scott Brady, Roy Roberts and Jack Webb) employ new-for-the-time crime-fighting techniques to trap their clever adversary. The manhunt leads through - and beneath - Los Angeles’ most noir-stained cityscapes, stunningly photographed by the greatest of all noir cinematographers, John Alton. Featuring uncredited directorial assistance from Anthony Mann (RAW DEAL, T-MEN).


JOHNNY GUITAR
1954, Republic (Paramount), 110 min, USA, Dir: Nicholas Ray

Joan Crawford is headstrong Vienna, a saloon owner waiting for the railroad to reach her town. Her friendship with charming outlaw the Dancing Kid (Scott Brady) jeopardizes her standing in the local community. Uptight landowners led by jealous Emma (a frightening Mercedes McCambridge) will do anything to repress her yen for the Kid, even if it means lynching half the town to do it. Enter Vienna’s old flame, Johnny (Sterling Hayden), a quick-draw who’s given up guns for a guitar. Only director Nicholas Ray could pull off this color-coded, violent, romantic tall tale rife with allegorical references to the rabid right wing of 1950s America. Victor Young did the lush score, with Peggy Lee singing the torrid theme song. Co-starring Ward Bond, Ernest Borgnine, John Carradine.


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