Happy Noirvember! Day One: Noir on TCM
What’s Noirvember? It’s a month-long celebration of all things noir, started by Marya over at Cinema-Fanatic.com. I had so much fun participating last year that I figured I’d give it another whirl! I hope you’ll join me as I offer up any and everything noir that I can think of — from trivia and quotes to bios and reviews, and more!
For my inaugural Noirvember post this year, I’m providing a brief look at the noir features being aired on TCM this month. It’s not a long list, but there are some real gems, including one of my favorite obscure noirs. Enjoy!
November 5: Out of the Past (1947)
This classic is often referred to as the quintessential noir. I generally reserve that term for Double Indemnity, but hey — why quibble? The film stars Robert Mitchum as a small-town service station owner whose past catches up with him. It’s got more twists and turns than the road to Grandma’s house, but I promise you’ll never be bored.
November 7: The Prowler (1951)
I love this little-seen noir. It focuses on a married woman who falls for the cop who investigates her report of a prowler. Van Helflin and Evelyn Keyes give first-rate performances. Don’t miss it.
November 8: White Heat (1950)
Top o’ the world, ma! Yes, this is the one where James Cagney utters that famous line. He plays Cody Jarrett, a vicious gangster and migrane sufferer with a serious mother complex. Others in the cast include Edmond O’Brien, Virginia Mayo, and Steve Cochran. It’s good stuff.
November 15: The Glass Key (1942)
Alan Ladd and Veronica Lake star in the second of the seven films in which they appeared together. Ladd plays the right-hand man of a political boss portrayed by Brian Donlevy. Lake is the woman they both love. It’s not my favorite of the Lake-Ladd teamings, but it’s worth a look.
November 15: Leave Her to Heaven (1945)
Great stuff here, y’all. Gene Tierney plays a beautiful but thoroughly twisted sister who takes marital togetherness to a whole ‘nother level. It’s a rare color noir, and the cinematography is simply stunning, if you’re into that kinda thing. Cornel Wilde and Jeanne Crain co-star.
November 22: Lady in the Lake (1947)
Filmed from the subjective camera point of view, where we see things as main character Phillip Marlowe sees them, Lady in the Lake is not for everybody, but everybody should see it at least once. Plus, it stars Audrey Totter, who’s a welcome addition to any production.
November 24: Shield for Murder (1954)
This is the obscure noir I mentioned earlier that’s one of my favorites. You HAVE to see it. That’s all I’m sayin’.
November 25 Border Incident (1949)
This one was helmed by first-rate noir director Anthony Mann. That’s reason enough to check it out. It stars Ricardo Montalban and George Murphy as federal agents who go undercover to infiltrate an illegal smuggling operation. And Charles McGraw’s in the cast, too. Always a plus.
That’s it for noir in the month of November on TCM — mark your calendars and fire up your VCRs! (Or whatever.)
And join me tomorrow for Day 2 of Noirvember!