TRAPPED
1949, 78 min, Dir: Richard Fleischer

Producer Bryan Foy replicates the success of T-MEN (1947) with a gritty tale of Secret Service agents hunting a counterfeiting racket through the streets of Los Angeles. Expertly helmed by director Richard Fleischer, the film pairs a young Lloyd Bridges with 22-year old Barbara Payton, whose tempestuous career and tragic life became a staple of ’50s tabloids. Also starring the suave John Hoyt, and featuring a climactic showdown inside the downtown L.A. Red Car barn. Not on DVD!


THE BIG COMBO
1955, 87 min, USA, Dir: Joseph H. Lewis

One of the essential noirs pits malevolent crime kingpin Mr. Brown (Richard Conte) against a crusading copper (Cornel Wilde) in a battle for alluring Jean Wallace. The memorable noir palaver (purportedly by Philip Yordan) is accentuated by the cinematography of the legendary John Alton and a jazzy score by David Raksin. Featuring the unusual hit-man team of Lee Van Cleef and Earl Holliman amid a stand-out supporting cast: Brian Donlevy, Robert Middleton, Helen Walker, Jay Adler, John Hoyt, Ted de Corsia and Helene Stanton.


A KISS BEFORE DYING
1956, Park Circus/MGM, 104 min, USA, Dir: Gerd Oswald

Social-climbing college student Bud Corliss (Robert Wagner) is determined to marry into money – but his girlfriend’s pregnancy could derail his plans. That’s when Bud truly becomes a ladykiller. This rare Cinemascope color noir, based on the Edgar-winning novel by Ira Levin, reveals the psychosis lurking beneath the American affluence of the Eisenhower era. Filmed on location in Tucson, Arizona, and co-starring Jeffrey Hunter, Virginia Leith, Joanne Woodward and Mary Astor.


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