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Neddal
Posted on Tuesday, April 27, 2004 - 12:49 pm:   

Richard,
What are some of your favourite noir or neo-noir movies?

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-N
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Luís
Posted on Tuesday, April 27, 2004 - 04:43 pm:   

While you're at it, throw in some book recs too, please. I'm curious.
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richard
Posted on Wednesday, April 28, 2004 - 09:28 am:   

Movies - the obvious ones, the classics, are The Third Man and Bladerunner. After that, in no particular order Strange Days, Nikita (the Besson movie, I think in the US it was called La Femme Nikita), Heat, Copland, Leon, Sexy Beast, Reservoir Dogs, Violent Cop, HanaBi, The Midnight Man, Miller's Crossing, Prime Cut, Point Blank, Shanghai Triad, Feeling Minnesota.....we're getting into borderline territory here, I think - I would add the Matrix (first movie ONLY), but while it had the sheen of neonoir, I'm not convinced it wasn't just straightforward SF.

Books - I'd have to go by author, there are so many individual titles. Ellroy, Block, Sallis, Lee Burke, Mosely, to be going on with - particularly brilliant examples are Ellroy's White Jazz and Block's When the Sacred Ginmill Closes, but it's all good....
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Neddal
Posted on Wednesday, April 28, 2004 - 07:12 pm:   

Are you into any of the older authors? I've seen David Goodis' name pop up a lot recently.

WHITE JAZZ is great. I wonder if the movie version with Nolte and Cusack will ever get off the ground?

COPLAND - The Stallone movie? Or is there another movie named COPLAND?

I can definitely see the Matrix. The Wachowski Bros. did do Bound. It's two bad the second and third Matrix movies were so awful.

-N
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richard
Posted on Thursday, April 29, 2004 - 05:22 am:   

Older authors - I've read a lot of Jim Thompson, as well as the required Hammett and Chandler texts. The problem I find with older stuff is that it often hasn't stood the test of time too well. Chandler's very much a case in point - his noir world, ironically enough, is extremely white and middle class. And there's an off-putting degree of reader/writer complicit racism in his treatment of black American culture that makes him hard to read. This is a sharp contrast with someone contemporary like Mosely, who takes you inside the black American experience of the same era, or Ellroy who steadfastly refuses to airbrush out the inherent racism and brutality of the times. Thompson stands up a lot better, but even he is constrained by the mores and attitudes of his times, and some of what was obviously very shocking when it was written comes across as quite quaint and homely now. Of course, you can't blame him for that (it'd be like expecting explicit sex scenes in Jane Austen novels), but it does jar somewhat.

Speaking of Ellroy, I find it hard to imagine a credible movie version of White Jazz. Even in LA Confidential they had to strain and twist to get something out that wouldn't upset too many people - and WJ is far far more brutal and uncompromising.

Copland - yeah, that's the one, though calling it the Stallone movie is a bit harsh, given the rest of the cast...
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Neddal
Posted on Thursday, April 29, 2004 - 07:27 am:   

Brian De Palma is doing an adaptation of the Black Dahlia w/Josh Hartnett, Mark Wahlberg, and Scarlett Johansson. I hope it's better than Femme Fatale, which was ok, but suffered from some sloppy editing and a horrible script.

Yeah, White Jazz, I don't know. The seem to have pulled the listing from the IMDB so I guess it's on hold? I think that if they chose the director and cast carefully it could be done.

Copland - It was promoted here as a Stallone vehicle, which is why I didn't bother to check it out. Perhaps I should give it a chance.

I've heard that a lot about Chandler, that his work hasn't aged well. I have an omnibus hardback with The Big Sleep, Farewell, My Lovely , The High Window, and The Lady in the Lake in my to read pile.

Am kind of surprised that no Hitchcock made your movie list.

--
-N



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Stu
Posted on Thursday, June 03, 2004 - 10:58 am:   

Josh Hartnett in Black Dhalia? Ugh, isn't it bad enough that he's been signed up for Sin City?
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JV
Posted on Thursday, June 03, 2004 - 11:52 am:   

Richard:

What about Derek Raymond's four novels? The writer did commercial thriller/mystery potboilers under another name, then moved to France, abandoned all of his fame and fortune, and wrote these four gritty, noirish, brilliant mysteries that verge on horror.

Jeff
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richard
Posted on Thursday, June 03, 2004 - 04:27 pm:   

Raymond sounds worth chasing - will look him. Thanks for the pointer

Have just finished a peculiar white noir novel by a Norwegian writer, Pernille Rygg - it reads a bit like Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow, but with a more tightly controlled plot. Also calls to mind another offbeat crime writer Charlotte Grimshaw who I read a few years back - there's a similar obsession with relationships and the story seems as much about discoveries the detective is making abut herself as about the crime. English title The Butterfly Effect - oddd stuff, but definitely worth a look.

Josh Hartnett in Black Dahlia and Sin City - Hmmmmmm. Come to that, Hollywood movies of the Black Dahlia and Sin City - Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. (I'd be more scathing but I'm in an oddly tolerant and balanced frame of mind right now. Strange - pretty sure it won't last.)

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