Friday, Jan 29, 2016 • ​​​ART? IN HOLLYWOOD?


1952, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer [Warner Bros.]. 116 min. Scr. Charles Schnee, based on a story by George Bradshaw. Dir. Vincente Minnelli

7:15 PM

Using a story structure borrowed from Citizen Kane, we learn the history of producer Jonathan Shields (Kirk Douglas) through the recollections of an actress (Lana Turner), a director (Walter Pidgeon), and a writer (Dick Powell)—all of whom are being wheedled by Shields into making another film together. The script artfully weaves true Hollywood stories into a seamless and stormy melodrama that, thanks to the vision of Vincente Minnelli and the performances of an extraordinary cast, becomes the ultimate "Hollywood" movie. The film won five Oscars®, including Best Supporting Actress for Gloria Grahame.


1955, United Artists [Park Circus]. 111 min. Scr. James Poe, based on the stage play by Clifford Odets. Dir. Robert Aldrich

9:40 PM

Charlie Castle (Jack Palance) is a Hollywood star fed up with every aspect of his life being orchestrated by agents, managers, and studio bosses. Unfortunately, all these forces besiege his Beverly Hills home over a two-day period, attempting to strong-arm Charlie into signing a new seven-year studio contract. Compounding matters, Charlie's wife Marion (Ida Lupino) threatens to leave him if he surrenders his last shred of dignity. Unfortunately, Charlie has skeletons in his closet that make it hard for him to say No.

Saturday, Jan 30 Matinée Triple Bill • ​PAINTERS


1944, 20th Century-Fox. 84 min. Scr. Barré Lyndon, based on the novel by Marie Belloc Lowndes. Dir. John Brahm

1:00 PM

In this adaptation of the 1913 novel exploring the legend of Jack the Ripper, the notorious killer is depicted as a tortured soul, using the alias Mr. Slade (Laird Cregar), compelled to avenge the death of his artist brother, the victim of a beautiful actress. Slade insanely channels his brother's artistic sensitivity into his own "art"—the vengeful murder of attractive young women. John Brahm's expressionistic handling of the lurid material makes this the most affecting of all the many Ripper tales.


1945, Universal–International. 102 min. Scr. Dudley Nichols, from the novel La Chienne by Georges de La Fouchardière. Dir. Fritz Lang

4:15 PM

On the night of his retirement, aging, mild-mannered cashier Christopher Cross (Edward G. Robinson) becomes an accidental hero—rescuing a gorgeous young woman, Kitty March (Joan Bennett), from a would-be attacker. The poor sap doesn't realize he's stumbled upon a dust-up between a hooker and her pimp (Dan Duryea), and before long the devious duo is playing him for a prize chump, selling to tony galleries the paintings the love-struck Cross bestows on Kitty. This roundelay can only end in tragedy.


1944, Producers Releasing Corp. 73 min. Scr. Pierre Gendron, based on a story by Werner H. Furst and Arnold Phillips. Dir. Edgar G. Ulmer

2:50 PM

The folkloric tale of French murderer Bluebeard is given a stylish interpretation by B-movie maestro Edgar G. Ulmer. Veteran character actor John Carradine steps to the center of the frame as Gaston Morrell, a puppeteer and painter to whom women have a fatal attraction. Ulmer produced his best films (like Detour) in the 1940s, his resourcefulness and creativity trumping paltry budgets, as evinced by his recreation of Paris for this film, which he considered one of his best.

Saturday, January 30 Evening • BALLET DANCERS​​


1948, The Archers. 133 mins. Scr. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, based on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen. Dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger

7:15 PM

Ballerina Victoria Page (Moira Shearer) lives to dance, but finds her desire torn between two men: the impresario Lermontov who can fulfill her artistic ambitions, and Julian Craster, the young composer with whom she truly is in love. Her quandary culminates in a majestic staging of the classic fairy tale "The Red Shoes". One of the cinema's most vivid uses of Technicolor, this gorgeously designed film is one of the darkest and most compelling films ever made about artistic compulsion.


1946, Republic Pictures. 90 min. Scr. Ben Hecht. Dir. Ben Hecht and Lee Garmes.

10:00 PM

Theatrical producer Max Polikoff and ballet instructor Madame La Sylph (Judith Anderson) want to stage a new show starring the great Andre Sanine, despite the dancer being a suspect in the murder of his wife seven months earlier. Ambitious young ballerina Haidi helps nurse the unstable Sanine back to health, in hopes she will be his partner in his triumphant return to the stage. But is Sanine guilty? Will the staging of Le Spectre de la Rose be an artistic triumph—or a murderous tragedy? The last directorial effort of legendary screenwriter Ben Hecht is a strange and utterly unique hybrid of elegant dance, florid dialogue, theatrical drama, and droll comedy.

35mm preservation print courtesy of UCLA Film & Television Archive

Sunday, January 31 • PHOTOGRAPHERS​


1960, Michael Powell Productions. 101 min. Scr. Leo Marks, from his original story. Dir. Michael Powell

1:30 PM, 6:30 PM

Michael Powell's Peeping Tom, his first solo production (without collaborator Emeric Pressburger), almost destroyed his career and reputation as one of the world's most revered filmmakers. Upon its release, the British press savaged the film, offended by its unseemly theme and sexually graphic content. The tale revolves around a psychologically traumatized boy (Carl Boehm) who grows up to be a cameraman with a horrifying fetish: filming the fear of his female victims before he kills them.


1966, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer [Warner Bros.]. 111 min. Scr. Michelangelo Antonioni and Tonino Guerra, from a story by Julio Cortázar. Dir. Michelangelo Antonioni

3:30 PM, 8:45 PM

Perhaps the most iconic "art film" of the Sixties, Blow-Up uses the plot thread of a murder-mystery to present questions about art itself, and the artist's willingness, even eagerness, to distort reality and perception. Director Antonioni presents a day in the life of a successful but ennui-ridden London fashion photographer (David Hemmings) who, after surreptitiously taking candid shots of lovers in the park, realizes he may have captured evidence of a murder.

Film Noir Foundation

Copyright © 2015. Website design: Ted Whipple/Incite Design; poster and logo design: Bill Selby; poster and NOIRCITY photos: David M. Allen