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Cinema

Frank Sidebottom The Home of the Retrospective

ON DVD & BLU-RAY

The Woman in the Window (1944) Blu Ray (Eureka!)

Fritz Lang's classic film noir thriller is excruciatingly tense and tightly-constructed. The ending is something of a bone of contention but there's still plenty for everyone to enjoy up until that point, be it Lang's stylish direction or the sultry Joan Bennett.

Joan Bennett is The Woman in the Window

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No Orchids for Miss Blandish (1948) Blu Ray (Indicator)

This adaptation of James Hadley Chase's novel of the same name was controversial in its day but can now be seen for what it is: a bad pastiche of Hollywood film noir and gangster movies, albeit with some good visual design. Starring Jack La Rue, Lindon Travers and a pre-Carry On Sid James.

No Orchids for Miss Blandish (1948)

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The Reckless Moment (1949) dir: Max Ophüls Blu Ray (Indicator)

Joan Bennett plays a housewife who becomes ensnared in a blackmail plot orchestrated by James Mason's ambiguous antagonist and his mysterious partner in crime. Max Ophüls' last Hollywood film is a gripping and concise film noir classic which is well worthy of rediscovery.

Joan Bennett and James Mason in The Reckless Moment

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Human Desire (1954) dir: Fritz Lang Blu Ray & DVD (Eureka!)

This Americanised adaptation of Jean Renoir's version of Émile Zola’s novel La Bête humaine is one of Lang's more underrated film noirs. The director's cinematic flair and the ambiguities in the central characterisations make for a gripping watch.

Gloria Grahame and Glenn Ford in Human Desire

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Laura (1944) dir: Otto Preminger Blu Ray (Eureka!)

This classic film noir mystery is, at its heart, a dreamlike study of obsession - and one which has considerable relevance in today's post-#MeToo era. It features memorable performances by Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb and Vincent Price.

A painting of Laura (1944), a film directed by Otto Preminger

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Ministry of Fear (1944) dir: Fritz Lang Blu Ray (Indicator)

This film noir spy mystery, set in WWII era Britain, is an underrated entry in Fritz Lang's filmography. Expect a lot of art deco production design, chiaroscuro lighting, inventive setpieces and an engaging everyman performance courtesy of Ray Milland.

Hillary Brooke in Ministry of Fear

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No Way Out (1950) starring Sidney Poitier Blu Ray & DVD (Eureka!)

Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s film noir message movie helped to pave the way for African-American leading men in Hollywood cinema. Aside from Poitier's subtly engaging performance, we get Richard Widmark's supremely loathsome racist villain and Linda Darnell as a hard-bitten wild card.

Sidney Poitier and Richard Widmark in No Way Out (1950)

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Gumshoe (1971) dir: Stephen Frears Blu Ray (Indicator)

Albert Finney plays a Liverpool bingo caller who wilfully slips into a world of film noir intrigue in this razor-sharp British homage to hardboiled detective stories.

Gumshoe directed by Stephen Frears

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Four Film Noir Classics Blu Ray & DVD (Arrow Academy)

A worthy noir Blu Ray collection marred by so-so audio-visual aspects. The films are The Dark Mirror, Secret Beyond the Door, Force of Evil and The Big Combo.

Joan Bennett in Secret Beyond the Door

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Stormy Monday (1988) Blu Ray & DVD (Arrow)

Mike Figgis's debut is a Monday morning drudgery of a movie.

Newcastle Noir in Stormy Monday

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More DVDs and Blu Rays

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Monia Chokri in Emma Peeters

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Erik the Conqueror directed by Mario Bava

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