Touch of Evil

Orson Welles and Charlton Heston in Touch of Evil

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one     10 May   Rock around the Clock released, 1954 On this day in 1954, Bill Haley and His Comets released the single Rock around the Clock. It wasn’t the first rock and roll record – that was probably Rocket 88 …

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Double Indemnity

Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray in Double Indemnity

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one     18 April   Miklós Rózsa born, 1907 On this day in 1907, the celebrated and prolific film composer Miklós Rózsa was born, in Budapest, Hungary. His mother was a pianist and his father was a wealthy industrialist. Young Miklós was …

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Murder, My Sweet

Original cinema poster for Murder, My Sweet

  A movie for every day of the year – a good one     14 November     Dick Powell born, 1904 On this day in 1904, Dick Powell was born. A remarkably adaptable man, Powell started his career as a singer in the 1920s, then became a movie star in the 1930s. In …

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The Third Man

    So much is right about the Third Man that could have gone so wrong. Producer David O. Selznick wanted it shot entirely on studio sets. Director Carol Reed disagreed and won, which is why it’s shot on the dank streets of post-war Vienna, a city as overrun with black marketeers as the film …

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Strangers on a Train

    Remakes are always being mooted – one far-fetched internet rumour had Ricky Gervais starring in one of them – but whatever eventually pops out, it’s unlikely to eclipse this warped 1951 original, directed by Alfred Hitchcock and written by Patricia Highsmith, surely one of cinema’s most misanthropic couplings. Hitchcock, as book after book …

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Kiss Me Deadly

    Critics continue to argue over whether this is the best film noir ever made but all seem united on one point – Kiss Me Deadly is the best adaptation of one of Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer novels. Now 50 years old, the film opens with a scene that still packs a punch – …

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