CALL NORTHSIDE 777
1948, 20th Century Fox, 111 min, USA, Dir: Henry Hathaway

In the late 1940s, hardhitting action director Hathaway was the pioneer of a new breed of startlingly neo-realistic, noirish crime film. Pictures like HOUSE ON 92nd STREET and KISS OF DEATH helped to cement his reputation as a genre master, and there's no better example of his straight-from-the-headlines style than in this superior suspenser, with James Stewart trying to prove that convicted killer Richard Conte is innocent. With Lee J. Cobb, Helen Walker.


PLAYGIRL
1954, Universal, 85 min, Dir: Joseph Pevney

A New York chanteuse (Shelley Winters) tries to wise up her corn-fed friend (Coleen Miller) to the realities of city life but matters quickly spiral out of control. Shelley’s neighbor (Gregg Palmer) works for a scandal rag and her playboy friend (Richard Long) is little more than a pimp. Meanwhile, Winters warbles on the bandstand between trysts with her married boyfriend (Barry Sullivan). This lurid Joe Pevney-helmed melodrama has been vaulted for over half a century. Don’t miss its coming-out party!


CITY THAT NEVER SLEEPS
1953, Paramount, 90 min, Dir: John H. Auer

Few things are as satisfying as a down-and-dirty crime noir filled with ingenious plot twists and bursting with eccentric characters in life-or-death struggles. For a brief, seedy moment in the ’50s, this wanton and wonderful world was the stamping ground of producer-director John H. Auer and writer Steve Fisher. Here they present a sordid tale of one night in the urban jungle, narrated by the city (Chicago) itself! A vivid cast of B-movie stalwarts (Gig Young, Mala Powers, Edward Arnold, William Talman, Marie Windsor) highlights the tale of a cop ensnared in the shady dealings of a slew of sinister suspects - including the tear-jerking Mechanical Man (Wally Cassell).


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