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).


THE BEAST FROM 20,000 FATHOMS
1953, Warner Bros., 80 min, USA, Dir: Eugene Lourie

A giant prehistoric creature called a rhedosaurus is awakened from his icy slumber by nuclear testing and travels to New York City, where he takes out his bad temper on the stunned population. Based on a short story by longtime Ray Harryhausen pal Ray Bradbury (they met years earlier as members of the Los Angeles Science Fiction Society, along with Forrest Ackerman!). Starring Paul Christian, Paula Raymond, Kenneth Tobey.


HELL’S HALF ACRE
1954, Paramount, 91 min, USA, Dir: John Auer

This wonderfully trashy Steve Fisher yarn concerns a woman (Evelyn Keyes) who heads to Hawaii in search of her husband (Wendell Corey), believed killed in the Pearl Harbor attack. Her only clue? A hit record with lyrics he’d written to her! Keyes is spunky and irresistible, as is Elsa Lanchester (as a gabby cabbie). The great Marie Windsor is the slatternly wife of a drunken sleaze (Jesse White). Filmed on location in Honolulu’s notorious red-light district. Don’t miss Tiki Noir on the big screen! Also starring Nancy Gates, Philip Ahn and Keye Luke.


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