CITY THAT NEVER SLEEPS
1953, Paramount, 90 min, Dir: John H. Auer

Few things are as satisfying as a down-and-dirty crime noir filled with ingenious plot twists and bursting with eccentric characters in life-or-death struggles. For a brief, seedy moment in the ’50s, this wanton and wonderful world was the stamping ground of producer-director John H. Auer and writer Steve Fisher. Here they present a sordid tale of one night in the urban jungle, narrated by the city (Chicago) itself! A vivid cast of B-movie stalwarts (Gig Young, Mala Powers, Edward Arnold, William Talman, Marie Windsor) highlights the tale of a cop ensnared in the shady dealings of a slew of sinister suspects - including the tear-jerking Mechanical Man (Wally Cassell).


BRING ME THE HEAD OF ALFREDO GARCIA
1974, MGM Repertory, 112 min, USA, Dir: Sam Peckinpah

Director Sam Peckinpah’s macabre shaggy-dog story rises to the status of existential masterpiece before the last frame unspools. A ruthless land baron (Emilio Fernandez) offers a huge bounty to find Alfredo Garcia, the father of his daughter’s unborn child. Piano-playing, expatriate loser Bennie (Warren Oates in one of his finest roles) shambles through the hellish backwater villages of rural Mexico on the hunt for "easy" money, a deadly pilgrimage that could jeopardize Bennie’s one real chance at happiness - the love of his loyal, prostitute girlfriend Elita (Isela Vega). Look for the incomparable Robert Webber and Gig Young as the poker-faced killers tailing Bennie.


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