99 RIVER STREET
1953, Park Circus/MGM, 83 min, Dir: Phil Karlson

An aspiring actress (Evelyn Keyes) gets entangled with a washed-up boxer (John Payne) framed for the murder of his trampy wife (Peggie Castle). They’ve only got a few hours to hunt down the real killer. No director crafted rugged crime dramas bursting with violence better than director Phil Karlson, and this film (set entirely at night) is one of his best. Keyes lights up the screen and former crooner Payne is a convincing noir tough guy. With Brad Dexter, Frank Faylen, Jay Adler and Jack Lambert.


LARCENY
1948, Universal, 89 min, USA, Dir: George Sherman

Here’s one of Dan Duryea’s most obscure titles, also notable for being the first foray into film noir for crooner John Payne (of 99 RIVER STREET and KANSAS CITY CONFIDENTIAL fame). The two slicks play hustlers trying to bilk a war widow (Joan Caulfield) out of her money. Things really heat up when pistol-packing Shelley Winters, who has a thing for both men, hits town. Wisecracking scriptwriter Bill Bowers has a field day with all the slang-spewing sass.


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