Noir City DC
Presented in association with the Film Noir Foundation
October 17 - November 5
AFI Silver is proud to present Washington, DC's, very first edition of the Noir City Film Festival, produced by "czar of noir" Eddie Muller and the Film Noir Foundation. For several years, Noir City has packed San Francisco's Castro Theatre and Los Angeles's Egyptian Theatre, and AFI proudly welcomes this festival to its first East Coast venue.
As last spring's program at the Egyptian put it, noir never goes out of style:
"What is it about the dark worldview--rainy nights, unfamiliar and unfriendly streets, shady grifters and duplicitous dames--that archetypal film noir milieu that fascinates us so? The plight of an Everyman (or woman) sucked into a whirlpool of dismal circumstance beyond his control--these scenarios hold us spellbound. Are we watching as voyeurs, glad to see someone else with worse luck than our own? Or are we hoping to find a key to dealing with our own existential plight that may not be as violent or as dramatic but nevertheless just as traumatizing? All one has to do is listen to the news to see very plainly that, hey, it's a noir world, baby!"
THE FILM NOIR FOUNDATION
The Film Noir Foundation is a non-profit public benefit corporation created as an educational resource regarding the cultural, historical, and artistic significance of film noir as an original American cinematic movement. It is the mission of the Foundation to find and preserve films in danger of being lost or irreparably damaged, and to ensure that high quality prints of these classic films remain in circulation for theatrical exhibition to future generations.
Visit www.FilmNoirFoundation.org for more information.
Special thanks to Eddie Muller and Foster Hirsch for making this series possible.
FARLEY GRANGER AT FILM NOIR DC
Star of stage and screen Farley Granger will appear at the Saturday, October 25 screening of STRANGERS ON A TRAIN--one of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest masterpieces, which, coincidentally, is partially set here in Washington, DC--as part of AFI's inaugural Noir City DC Film Series. Farley Granger is also the author of the memoir, Include Me Out: My Life From Goldwyn To Broadway
, recently issued in paperback from St. Martin's Press.
STRANGERS ON A TRAINIn Person: Farley Granger!
"Criss-cross. I'll kill yours, you kill mine." Tennis pro Farley Granger meets mysterious, overly admiring Robert Walker on a train from New York to Washington, DC, and soon receives a startling proposal: Walker will kill Granger's unfaithful wife in return for Granger killing Walker's stern and disapproving father. Alfred Hitchcock's ingeniously choreographed thriller begins like a farce, but through tightly scripted narrative turns (Raymond Chandler co-scripted the screenplay after a Patricia Highsmith novel) and masterful cinematic design, the suspense is ratcheted up toward a show-stopping finale.
DIR/PROD Alfred Hitchcock; SCR Raymond Chandler, Czenzi Ormonde, Whitfield Cook, based on the novel by Patricia Highsmith. US, 1951, b&w, 101 min. RATED PG
Saturday, October 25, 7:00
Tickets: $12 general admission, $10 AFI Members
This is a no pass engagement
THEY LIVE BY NIGHT
Nicholas Ray's haunting tale of lovers who get caught up in the slide of inescapable connections and ill-fated choices is heartfelt, incisive and as beautifully measured today as it was 60 years ago. Ray's sympathy for his protagonists elevates the story beyond any crime thriller, and his use of tight compositions and framing only enhances the tragic atmosphere of reality and doom. (note courtesy Turner Classic Movies)
DIR/SCR Nicholas Ray; SCR Charles Schnee, based on the novel Thieves Like Us by Edward Anderson; PROD John Houseman. US, 1948, b&w, 95 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, October 25, 3:00; Sunday, October 26, 6:45 - Just Added!; Monday, October 27, 7:00; Wednesday, October 29, 9:15
New York mailman Farley Granger succumbs to temptation and steals an envelope stuffed with cash. He ends up chased through the city by blackmailers, extortionists and murderers. A masterpiece of atmosphere and sustained suspense, directed by Anthony Mann. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Anthony Mann; SCR Sydney Boehm; PROD Sam Zimbalist. US, 1950, b&w, 83 min. NOT RATED
Sunday, October 26, 3:15; Monday, October 27, 9:00
Nominated for seven Oscars, including Best Picture, Director, Screenplay and Actress. Film noir at its noir-est, as jaded insurance man Fred MacMurray and bored housewife Barbara Stanwyck team up to murder her husband and collect on the policy. They fool ace insurance inspector Edward G. Robinson, but getting away with murder turns out to be a full-time job. The screenplay is by Billy Wilder and detective fiction maestro Raymond Chandler, adapting the novel of another hardboiled great, James M. Cain.
DIR/SCR Billy Wilder; SCR Raymond Chandler, based on the novel by James M. Cain. US, 1944, color, 107 min. RATED PG
Friday, October 17, 4:45, 7:00, 9:15; Saturday, October 18, 4:45, 9:30; Sunday, October 19, 9:40
DETOUR is dominated by the amazing performance of Ann Savage (recently seen in Guy Maddin's MY WINNIPEG) as Vera, a woman made out of emotional ice, picked up on the highway by a man (Tom Neal) running away from his past in a car he stole after the driver died. In a bizarre twist, it turns out Vera knew the driver, and she totally dominates poor Neal as she directs his life into patterns he does not want or understand. There has never been a femme fatale like Savage in this extraordinary film, directed by the auteur of the Poverty Row studios, Edgar G. Ulmer.
DIR Edgar G. Ulmer; SCR Martin Goldsmith, based on his novel; PROD Leon Fromkess. US, 1945, b&w, 67 min. NOT RATED
Thursday, October 23, 9:15, Friday, October 24, 5:30; Saturday, October 25, 5:00 - Just Added!; Sunday, October 26, 5:05; Monday, October 27, 5:30; Tuesday, October 28, 5:30
#12 on AFI's Top 100 American Movies of the Last 100 Years!
Nominated for 11 Oscars, and winner of three including Best Screenplay. "I am big! It's the pictures that got small!" Regarded by many as the best film ever made about Hollywood--and by others as audacious treachery. In flashback, dead screenwriter/kept man William Holden narrates his tormented, mutually exploitative affair with has-been star Gloria Swanson. Erich von Stroheim (onscreen as Swanson's devoted valet) came up with the memorable idea of having his character write the star's fan mail. Wilder rejected his other suggestion: von Stroheim washing and ironing her panties.
DIR/SCR Billy Wilder; SCR/PROD Charles Brackett; SCR D. M. Marshman Jr. US, 1950, b&w, 110 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, October 25, 9:45; Sunday, October 26, 1:00; Tuesday, October 28, 7:00
THE 3RD VOICE
This sensational, brain-teasing murder yarn (based on the novel All The Way by Charles Williams) features noir stalwart Edmond O'Brien as an anonymous chump hired by scheming secretary Laraine Day to kill her boss/lover--and assume his identity at a Mexican fishing resort. The appearance of sexy songbird Julie London complicates matters, of course. Featuring breathtaking black-and-white Cinemascope cinematography by Ernest Haller. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR/SCR/PROD Hubert Cornfield; SCR Charles Williams, based on his novel All The Way. US, 1960, b&w, 79 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, October 25, 5:00; Sunday, October 26, 6:45; Tuesday, October 28, 9:15
All screenings of THE 3RD VOICE have been canceled due to problems with film print availability. Replacement shows will be:
DETOUR, Sunday, Octobr 25, 5:00
THEY LIVE BY NIGHT, Sunday, October 26, 6:45
TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY
Handsome Steve Cochran with the perpetual 5 o'clock shadow racked up a slew of noir credits before his premature death in 1965,including WHITE HEAT, PRIVATE HELL
36 and THE DAMNED DON'T CRY. Here, he's an ex-con who's never been with a woman. Ruth Roman (STRANGERS ON A TRAIN) is a dime-a-dance dame with no use for sappy men. A hotel room, a dirty cop, a gunshot--the perfect jumpstart for a fugitives-on-the-run love story. Cochran was never more vulnerable, Roman never
sexier. Imagine GUN CRAZY scripted by Steinbeck--it's that good. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Felix Feist; SCR Art Cohn, Guy Endore; PROD Henry Blanke. US, 1951, b&w, 90 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, October 25, 1:00; Sunday, October 26, 8:30
Don't miss the "re-premiere" of a nearly forgotten masterpiece! Joseph Losey's greatest American-made film--written by legendary blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo--has been fully restored to its original bleak splendor by the Film Noir Foundation and the UCLA Film and Television Archive. Crazed cop Van Heflin stalks lonely Los Angeles housewife Evelyn Keyes and eventually decides to win her in time-honored noir tradition: by knocking off her husband. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Joseph Losey; SCR Robert Thoeren, Hans Wilhelm, Hugo Butler; PROD Sam
Spiegel. US, 1951, b&w, 92 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, November 1, 1:00; Sunday, November 2, 1:00
Good-girl Marsha Hunt and bad-girl Claire Trevor duke it out for the soul of homme fatale Dennis O'Keefe in this rambunctious display of quintessential noir pulp, featuring stunning visuals by the legendary cinematographer John Alton. With Raymond Burr and John Ireland. Pristine 35mm archival print courtesy of the Library of Congress. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Anthony Mann; SCR Arnold B. Armstrong, Audrey Ashley, Leopold Atlas, John C. Higgins; PROD Edward Small. US, 1948, b&w, 79 min. NOT RATED
THE GRAND INQUISITOR
Legendary blacklisted actress Marsha Hunt, 90, returns to the screen in "a noir fairy tale, based on actual events." A cache of used books leads an intrepid young "investigator" to the home of a woman who may or may not be the widow of America's most notorious unapprehended serial killer. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR/SCR Eddie Muller; PROD Anita Monga. US, 2008, color, 22 min. NOT RATED
Saturday, November 1, 3:00; Monday, November 3, 7:00
KISS OF DEATH
This "semi-documentary" noir, with a taut script by Ben Hecht and a nicely understated performance by Victor Mature, is raised to legendary status by Richard Widmark in his Oscar-nominated screen debut, which still makes audiences squirm in their seats. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Henry Hathaway; SCR Ben Hecht, Charles Lederer, Eleazar Lipsky; PROD Fred Kohlmar. US, 1947, b&w, 98 min. NOT RATED
Sunday, November 2, 3:00; Tuesday, November 4, 9:05; Wednesday, November 5, 6:30*
NIGHT AND THE CITY
Richard Widmark stars in Jules Dassin's greatest English language film, one of the most baroque and bleak film noirs of them all. The greatness of this film--besides Widmark's devastating portrayal of the maniacal and pathetic Harry Fabian--is in its stubborn refusal to allow even the tiniest ray of light into Harry's headlong descent in hell. Featuring Gene Tierney, Googie Withers, Herbert Lom and Francis X. Sullivan-- and perhaps the ultimate film noir finale. (note courtesy Noir City)
DIR Jules Dassin; SCR Jo Eisinger, Gerald Kersh; PROD Samuel G. Engel. UK, 1950, b&w, 96 min. NOT RATED
Tuesday, November 4, 7:00; Wednesday, November 5, 9:15