New York Confidential and Human Desire

First, the movies.

It’s been more that 40 years since New York Confidential played on a big screen. This rare Noir gem is a gritty, tightly plotted, doco-style mob picture starring Broderick Crawford as a hot-headed Mafia king-pin, Richard Conte as a smooth, reptilian hit man, and my time-travel boyfriend Mike Mazurki doing what he does best. While there are no good guys (or gals) in this film, every single character is complex and sympathetic. Of all the films on the list, this was the one I was really dying to see and it didn’t disappoint. Apparently, there is a DVD in the works, slated for a June release, with commentary by Alan Rode. I’ll be ordering my copy the day it’s available, and I suggest you do the same.

Second up in our Broderick Crawford double feature was Human Desire. This one, I’d seen before, but never on a big screen. It’s a perverse, murderous love triangle between the violently jealous Crawford, Gloria Graham as his sexy yet strangely child-like wife and Glenn Ford as the brooding veteran who falls for her. A classic Film Noir plot with no surprises, but seething with animalistic ferocity and raw, blatant sexuality. Also highly recommended.

Now, a short(ish) rant about these young kids today.

I really love seeing the theater jam packed for these wonderful, often forgotten movies. Every single ticket sold helps the Film Noir Foundation fund the restoration and preservation of movies that might otherwise be lost forever. However…

Note to hipsters: These movies are NOT comedies. Is it really necessary to laugh and/or snort derisively at every other line? This is the Film Noir Festival, not Mystery Science Theater. Your pretentious irony, like a lady’s huge feathered hat, is blocking my view of the screen.

Though I have to say I did have a brief moment of private amusement when all the sniggering hipsters clammed up like scolded children during the brutal scene in Desire where Crawford beats the tar out of his cowering, sobbing wife. Gee, whatsamatter, smart guys? Ain’t it funny now?

End of rant. Now back to your regularly scheduled blogging.

Tonight “It’s a Crooked World” at the LA Film Noir Festival, with Drive a Crooked Road and Walk a Crooked Mile.

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