Film Noir and Neo Noir on TV August 2014

*All times are PST. Please check the Turner Classics Movie website to confirm dates and times or additional programming information.

Turner Classic Movie Channel

Tues, August 5, 3:00 AM—Wed, August 6, 3:00 AM

All Day Barbara Stanwyck Festival

Here are the noirs...

9:45 AM

THE TWO MRS. CARROLLS (1947): A sociopathic artist (Humphrey Bogart) decides that he would like to murder his wife in order to marry a flirtatious younger woman (Alexis Smith). However, the current Mrs. Carroll is Barbara Stanwyck, so you know this isn't going to be so easy, despite the fact that Babs is both uncharacteristically slow on the uptake and rather wimpy in this one. Dir. Peter Godfrey

1:15 PM

CRY WOLF (1947): A woman (Barbara Stanwyck) visits her late husband's family to claim her inheritance and soon finds herself in conflict with her scientist brother-in-law (Errol Flynn). Things take a gothic twist when she discovers agonizing cries coming from his secret laboratory. Richard Basehart, as always, raises the film out of its slightly silly story with his supporting performance. Dir. Peter Godfrey

10:00 PM

THE MAN WITH A CLOAK (1951): In this historical noir, a mystery man (Joseph Cotton) tries to help a young innocent (Leslie Caron) escape a murderous housekeeper (Barbara Stanwyck). Based on a story by John Dickson Carr. Dir. Fletcher Markle

Friday, August 8, 7:15 PM

ELEVATOR TO THE GALLOWS (1958): In this French new wave meets film noir, a soldier turned business man (Maurice Ronet) murders his employer, the husband of his mistress (Jeanne Moreau), which unintentionally provokes an ill-fated chain of events including his entrapment in an elevator shaft. Legendary jazz trumpeter Miles Davis contributed an original score for the film. Dir. Louis Malle

Saturday, August 9, 5:00 PM—8:45 PM

Thin Man Double Bill

5:00 PM

THE THIN MAN (1934): Dashiell Hammett's urbane but fun loving sleuths Nick and Nora Charles, along with their pup Asta, investigate the disappearance of an inventor in this classic blend of laughs and suspense. Shot in just two weeks by director Woody "One-Shot'' Van Dyke and cinematographer James Wong Howe, this gem set the gold standard for the sophisticated comedy—inspiring five sequels as well as countless inferior imitations. Van Dyke previously directed Myra Loy and William Powell in Manhattan Melodrama and spotted the terrific chemistry of their off screen banter between takes. He insisted on casting the pair as Hammett's hard-drinking super-couple and the glamorous pair became one of the movies' great romantic teams. Dir. Woody Van Dyke

6:45 PM

AFTER THE THIN MAN (1936): In this delightful follow up to The Thin Man, Nick (William Powell) and Nora (Myrna Loy) return to their home in San Francisco determined to rest up from their previous New York adventures, but Nora's snooty family unintentionally embroils them in a murder mystery. Joseph Calleia, Sam Levene, George Zucco and a young Jimmy Stewart add to the fun. Dir. W. S. Van Dyke

Tuesday, August 12, 7:15 AM

SPLIT SECOND (1955): In this tense thriller, escaped convicts hold hostages in a ghost town that's the target of a nuclear bomb test. One of the cons (Stephen McNally) falls for one of the one of the hostages (Alexis Smith) and things get even tenser. Dir. Dick Powell

Tuesday, August 12, 9:00 PM

CONFLICT (1945): A seemingly happily married man, (Humphrey Bogart) murders his wife so he can be free to marry her sister (Alexis Smith) who unfortunately does not return his affection. His friend and neighbor, a kindly psychologist (Sydney Greenstreet) starts to suspect something. Dir. Curtis Bernhardt

Friday, August 15, 9:00 PM

CHINATOWN (1974): In this critically lauded neo-noir, a private eye (Jack Nicholson) unwittingly sets up an innocent man for murder and then joins his widow (Faye Dunaway) in unearthing the corruption behind the crime in this physically beautiful but emotionally bleak neo-noir set in a morally bankrupt 1930s Los Angeles. Dir. Roman Polanski

Saturday, August 16, 3:15 PM

UNDERWORLD STORY (1950): Mike Reese (Dan Duryea), an unethical journalist turned newspaper publisher becomes involved in creating the news and not just writing it when there's a murder case involving another publisher. Mike starts out doing what's best for him, but when an innocent African-American maid is framed, he starts to waver in pursuing his self-interests. Will Mike do right? Hard to tell with Duryea in the driver's seat. Dir. Cy Endfield

Saturday, August 16, 9:00 PM

THE LETTER (1940): Bette Davis gives a masterful performance as a married woman claiming self-defense in the murder of a fellow Britisher on her husband's rubber plantation in Malay. This succeeds both as a film noir and an incisive look into colonialism. Herbert Marshall gives a deeply empathetic performance as the loving husband. Watch for Victor Sen Yung as a solicitous lawyer's clerk. Dir. William Wyler

Sunday, August 17, 12:00 AM

HIGH WALL (1947): Lovely, and for once, non-trampy, Audrey Totter plays a psychiatrist who may provide the key to proving a veteran flyer (Robert Taylor) innocent of his wife's murder. Herbert Marshall co-stars as the murdered wife's religious tract publisher boss and lover. Dir. Curtis Bernhardt

Sunday, August 17, 10:45 PM

THE ARNELO AFFAIR (1947): A neglected wife (Frances Gifford) gets mixed up with an homme fatale (John Hodiak). When she tries to break it off, he threatens to implicate her in the murder of his girlfriend. This is a rare cinematic outing by master old time radio writer-producer Arch Oboler. Dir. Arch Oboler

Tuesday, August 19, 10:45 AM

HARPER (1966): In this neo-noir, soon to be divorced private eye (Paul Newman) sets out to find the missing millionaire husband for his crippled wife (Lauren Bacall). The trail leads to a religious cult and a kidnapping plot. Dir. Jack Smight

Wednesday, August 20, 7:00 PM

PICKUP ON SOUTH STREET (1953): Sam Fuller's esteemed noir revolves around an amoral sneak thief, Richard Widmark, who steals a girl of ill repute's purse containing microfilm. He soon finds himself in the crossfire between the Feds and the Commies, but he's only out for himself. Thelma Ritter steals the show as his friend, a small time grifter trying to make enough dough for her dream funeral. Dir. Sam Fuller

Friday, August 22, 3:00 PM

WAIT UNTIL DARK (1967): A commercial artist unknowingly brings a stash of heroin into his home. Bad guys trace the dope to him. They trick him into leaving the house, but, unfortunately, his blind wife (Audrey Hepburn) is there alone. They proceed to terrorize her and she tries to figure out how to turn the tables on her unknown assailants. Dir. Terence Young

Saturday, August 23, 10:00 AM

BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK (1955): A one-armed veteran (Spencer Tracy) uncovers small-town secrets when he tries to visit an Asian-American war hero's family. Noir icon Robert Ryan shines as the bigoted boss of the town. This film earned 3 Oscar nominations: Spencer Tracy for Best Actor in a Leading Role; John Sturges for Best Director; and Best Writing, Screenplay for Millard Kaufman. Dir. John Sturges

Sunday, August 24, 5:00 AM

THE MALTESE FALCON (1941): How do I love this movie, let me count the ways… Arguably the first, and greatest, film noir, hard-boiled detective Sam Spade (Humphrey Bogart) gets caught up in the deadly search for a priceless statue. Along the way he tangles with a murderous liar (Mary Astor), an effete thug (Peter Lorre) and a fat mastermind (Sydney Greenstreet). Director John Huston brilliantly adapted it from the Dashiell Hammett novel. Dir. John Huston

Sunday, August 24, 5:00 PM

HE RAN ALL THE WAY (1951): John Garfield plays a desperate criminal on the run from a robbery that ended with a shooting. He takes refuge in the family apartment of a naïve young woman (Shelley Winters). She falls in love with him, complicating further a tense hostage situation. Dir. John Berry

Sunday, August 24, 10:15 PM

THE HARD WAY (1943): Ida Lupino plays a woman obsessed with making her younger sister (Joan Leslie) a star. Jack Carson steals the show playing Leslie's sweetly tragic first husband who Lupino sacrifices on the altar of Leslie's career. Dir. Vincent Sherman

Mon, August 25, 3:00 AM—Tues, August 26, 3:00 AM

TCM Salutes Dick Powell

Here are the noirs...

1:15 PM

PITFALL (1948): This independently produced gem is one of the most realistic explorations of adultery produced in 1940s Hollywood (along with The Unfaithful, coincidentally playing tomorrow on TCM). Bored suburbanite insurance salesman (Dick Powell) drifts into a dalliance with an anti-femme fatale, hard-luck model Mona (Lizabeth Scott), only to find his life and family threatened by an obsessive private eye (Raymond Burr) and a jealous ex-con. Director de Toth had the gifted Bill Bowers rewrite the script. The result is truly believable noir—a wrenching tale of repressed lust and suburban ennui. Dir Andre de Toth

6:15 PM

MURDER, MY SWEET (1944): The film that graduated Dick Powell from romantic musical lead to noir tough guy. Raymond Chandler's detective and knight errant, Philip Marlowe's (Powell) search for a singer name Velma, leads him through a tangled web of blackmail and murder. Along the way, he finds himself embroiled with a wealthy man's unscrupulous gold-digging wife (Claire Trevor) and the step-daughter that despises her (Anne Shirley). Mike Mazurki gives a standout performance as the mentally challenged and extremely physically powerful ex-con that hires Marlowe to find Velma. "Cute as pants." Dir. Edward Dmytryk


THE TALL TARGET (1951): In this film noir cloaked as historical fiction, a determined detective (Dick Powell) tries to prevent the assassination of President-elect Abraham Lincoln during the train ride to his inauguration. It's helmed by legendary noir director Anthony Mann and shot by Paul Vogel, the cinematographer responsible for Lady in the Lake's first person P.O.V. Dir. Anthony Mann

Wed, August 27, 3:00 AM—Thurs, August 27, 3:00 AM

TCM Salutes Edmond O'Brien

Here are the noirs...

5:00 AM

THE HITCH-HIKER (1953): In this gripping suspense piece, a murderous madman (William Talman) on the lam from the law kidnaps two businessmen (Edmond O'Brien and Frank Lovejoy) on a hunting trip. Noir siren Ida Lupino both directed and co-wrote the film which was produced by The Filmmakers, the independent production company she founded with her then husband Collier Young. Dir. Ida Lupino

6:30 AM

A CRY IN THE NIGHT (1956): A police captain's (Edmond O'Brien) emotions get in the way when his daughter (Natalie Wood) is kidnapped by a madman (Raymond Burr who else?). Brain Donlevy co-stars as the night shift Captain who tries to find her. Dir. Frank Tuttle


BACKFIRE (1950): A veteran (Gordon MacRae), recovering from multiple surgeries, tries to clear an old friend (Edmond O'Brien) of a murder charge with the help of his nurse (Virginia Mayo) and a mysterious woman (Viveca Lindfors). Dir. Vincent Sherman

3:00 PM

WHITE HEAT (1949): "Top of the world, Ma!" A government agent (Edmond O'Brien) infiltrates a gang run by a mother-fixated psychotic (James Cagney) in a stand out performance. This film marks when the traditional Warner Brothers' interpretation of the gangster gave way to the more cynical and psychological film noir interpretation. Pointless trivia: Naked Gun 33 1/3 borrowed the plot. Dir. Raoul Walsh

5:00 PM

D.O.A. (1950): This classic and rather convoluted noir tells the tale of a victim of a slow-acting poison (Edmond O'Brien) who tracks down his own killer. Existential doom and great San Francisco locations abound. Dir. Rudolph Mate

10:30 PM

THE BIGAMIST (1953): Social realism meets film noir in this tale of a woman (Joan Fontaine) who while adopting a child discovers that her husband and business partner (Edmond O'Brien) has another wife (Ida Lupino). The characters are ordinary and nice which makes this film both complicated and believable. Lupino also directed the film which was produced by her business partner and ex-husband Collier Young who was at the time married to Lupino's co-star Fontaine. Dir. Ida Lupino

Thursday, August 28, 3:00 PM

SCENE OF THE CRIME (1949): LAPD Lieutenant Mike Conovan (Van Johnson) investigates the murder of his ex-partner Ed Monigan whom the department believes was on the take, since they found $1000 in cash on his corpse. Monigan's son convinces Conovan that his father was working was actually working under cover. As Conovan tries to both find the murder and clear his partner's reputation, he cozies up to a stripper (Gloria De Haven). Meanwhile, his wife (Arlene Dahl) tries to persuade him to leave the dangers of police work behind. Dir. Roy Rowland

Fri, August 29, 3:00 AM–Sat, August 30, 3:00 AM

TCM Salutes Joseph Cotten

Here are the noirs...

8:30 AM

THE STEEL TRAP (1952): Jim Osborne (Joseph Cotten), an assistant manager of a bank, decides to steal a million from his employers on a Friday, figuring that he can escape to Brazil over the weekend to start a new life with no one the wiser until Monday. He takes his unsuspecting wife (Teresa Wright) with him. When she discovers the theft during what she believes to be a vacation, she tries to persuade him to return the money to the bank before it's too late. Dir. Andrew Stone

12:00 PM

GASLIGHT (1944): A newlywed (Ingrid Bergman) fears she's going mad when strange things start happening at the family mansion where her aunt was murdered ten years earlier. Joseph Cotten stars as the handsome stranger who aids her. Charles Boyer stars as the handsome husband who terrorizes her. Dir. George Cukor

3:45 PM

JOURNEY INTO FEAR (1942): This playful film features Joseph Cotten, who adapted the novel for the screen, as a munitions expert who gets tangled up in an espionage plot in Turkey. Watch for Orson Welles as an amorous army officer. Karl Struss served as director of photography. Dir. Norman Foster & Orson Welles (uncred.)

9:15 PM

THE THIRD MAN (1949): This fantastic film about a naive American, Joseph Cotten, investigating the death of his friend, Orson Welles, in post-World War II Vienna never loses its impact no matter how many times you watch it. "Like the fella says, in Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love - they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock". Director of Photography Robert Krasker won the Oscar for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White for the film. Dir. Carol Reed

Sat, August 30, 3:00 AM—Sun, August 31, 3:00 AM

TCM Salutes Alan Ladd

Here are the noirs...

9:45 AM

THE GLASS KEY (1942): This well-made adaptation of the Dashiell Hammett novel unwinds a tale of murder and political corruption, involving Ned (Alan Ladd), his boss and best friend, Paul (Brian Donlevy) and the woman (Veronica Lake) who comes between them. Dir. Stuart Heisler

7:15 PM

THIS GUN FOR HIRE (1942): In the film that made him a star, Alan Ladd plays a sociopathic hit man named Raven. When the traitorous munitions manufacturer who hired him pays him with marked bills from an armed robbery, Raven goes on the lam. While on the train to L. A. to avenge himself on the men who betrayed him, he kidnaps the fiancé of a cop, Ellen (Veronica Ladd). Screenwriter W. R. Burnett adapted the script from Graham Greene's novel A Gun for Sale. Dir. Frank Tuttle

9:00 PM

THE BLUE DAHLIA (1946): A newly returned veteran (Alan Ladd) fights to prove he didn't kill his cheating wife (Doris Dowling). His shell-shocked war buddy (William Bendix) and a new love interest (Veronica Lake) try to help him find the real culprit. Dir. George Marshall

Jeanne Moreau with Miles Davis on the set of Elevator to the Gallows airing August 8;

Dick Powell, Alexis Smith and producer Edmund Grainger on the first day of shooting of his directorial debut, Split Second airing August 12;

Alexis Smith, the unwanted object of Bogie's affection in Conflict on August 12;

Faye Dunaway and Jack Nicholson in Polanski's Chinatown on August 15;

Dan Duryea not holding up well in Underworld Story on August 16;

Herbert Marshall and Bette Davis in The Letter on August 16;

Audrey Totter and Robert Taylor in The High Wall on August 17;

Homme fatale John Hodiak with Frances Gifford in The Arnelo Affair on August 17;

Paul Newman and Lauren Bacall in Harper on August 19;

Stars Robert Ryan and Spencer Tracy with director John Sturges on location for Bad Day at Black Rock on August 23;

John Garfield and Shelley Winters in He Ran All the Way on August 24;

Ida Lupino's a big sister with plans for Joan Leslie in The Hard Way on August 24;

Film noir cloaked as historical fiction in Anthony Mann's The Tall Target airing August 26;

Natalie Wood vis-a-vis Raymond Burr in A Cry in the Night on August 27;

Edmund O'Brien and Joan Fontaine in Ida Lupino-directed The Bigmaist on August 27

Gloria De Haven and Van Johnson in Scene of the Crime on August 28

Alan Ladd as hitman Raven in This Gun for Hire on August 30 as part of TCM's salute to Alan Ladd.

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