Faye Dunaway

Film Noir

Editor’s Note: Max Allan Collins has written over 50 novels and 17 movie tie-in books. He’s also the author of the Road to Perdition graphic novel, off which the film was based. With his new Mickey Spillane collaboration “Lady, Go Die” in great bookstores everywhere, we thought it would be fun to ask him for his ten best films noir. In true noir fashion, we bit off more than we could handle… We have to begin with a definition of noir, which is tricky, because nobody agrees on one. The historical roots are in French film criticism, borrowing the term noir (black) from the black-covered paperbacks in publisher Gallimard’s Serie Noire, which in 1945 began reprinting American crime writers such as Dashiell Hammett, James M. Cain, Raymond Chandler, Chester Himes, Horace McCoy, Jim Thompson, Mickey Spillane, W.R. Burnett and many others. The films the term was first applied to were low-budget American crime thrillers made during the war and not seen in France till after it. The expressionistic lighting techniques of those films had as much to do with hiding low production values as setting mood. In publishing circles, the term has come to replace “hardboiled” because it sounds hipper and not old-fashioned. I tend to look at dark themes and expressionistic cinematography when I’m making such lists, which usually means black-and-white only; but three color films are represented below, all beyond the unofficial cut-off of the first noir cycle (Kiss Me Deadly, 1955). Mystery genre expert Otto Penzler has […]



Robert Towne won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, but what most don’t realize is that the original script for Chinatown was over 300 pages long. That would have made quite the shooting schedule. Roman Polanski‘s enduring noir classic is headed to Blu-ray soon which means seeing J.J. Gittes getting his nose cut in high definition. Plus, we’re giving a copy away, and the one we have has Robert Towne’s signature on it (thanks to the intrepid team at Dolby Labs who secured it legally). If you’re into that sort of thing. So how do you get your hands on it? Glad I made it seem like you asked.


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If you ask someone what their favorite Steve McQueen movie is, they probably won’t say The Thomas Crown Affair. That’s a bittersweet testament to his career, because the entire movie is him being awesome, wealthy, and sneaking his thieving fingers into Faye Dunaway’s private collection. He also steals some artwork from some people. Effortlessly cool, it’s a study in mod everything – from clothes to furnishing to attitudes, and it represents a version of the 1960s where mutants aren’t constantly trying to stop the US and USSR from blowing each other up near Cuba.



Sleek, sophisticated and classy. But enough about me… I finally have some actual Cannes Film Festival news to report that people might be interested in reading! Up until now, I’ve had to live off scraps of information- including the recently announced, but long suspected inclusion of Terrence Malick’s over-due Tree of Life, but time is ticking on and we are getting into Proper Announcement Season. The big news in the past twenty four hours was the grand reveal of the Official Festival Poster, featuring an image of Faye Dunaway, shot by 1973 Palme d’Or winner Jerry Schatzberg (whose debut film Puzzle of a Downfall Child will also play at Cannes). Aside from looking a tiny bit like someone’s had a buzz-saw at the star, the poster is a beautiful thing, and I look forward to transporting its image around the Croisette on the uber-macho man-bags they always hand out at registration. And without further ado, here she is…



I’m sure a decent number of film sites out there are going to be looking at the Best Gangster films of all time. Since we already know that Analyze This tops the list every year, we decided to do something a little different – looking at the gorgeous women that stand beside their connected men.


Celebrity catfights would normally promote a movie, but not even a smackdown between Hilary Duff and Faye Dunaway can induce me to see the remake of Bonnie and Clyde

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published: 01.25.2015
published: 01.24.2015
published: 01.24.2015
published: 01.24.2015

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