A DOUBLE BILL OF FILM NOIR CLASSICS!
Writer, director, producer and actor Jules Dassin was one of Hollywood’s most remarkable talents. Between 1947 and 1955 he directed a string of stylish, gritty, and hard-hitting Film Noir classics including Thieves Highway and Night And The City. Blacklisted in the communist witch hunts of the House Un-American Activities, he would continue that run with Rififi, directed in France. Each film is a diamond hard classic, weathering the test of time with sharp edges intact.
Tales from The Urban Jungle brings together the two films which started that extraordinary streak of hits. In Brute Force, Burt Lancaster is Joe Collins, one of a number of convicts squeezed into cell R17 and intent on breaking out. Desperate to return to his cancer-ridden wife (Ann Blyth), and to escape the clutches of sadistic warden Captain Munsey (an unforgettable performance from Hume Cronyn) who enjoys a reign of terror over the inmates.
Meanwhile, in The Naked City, a blonde ex-model is murdered in her bathtub and detectives Muldoon (Barry Fitzgerald) and Halloran (Don Taylor) are assigned to the case. Their investigation leads them all over New York City, from Park Avenue to the Lower East Side, reaching its thrilling climax atop the Williamsburg Bridge. Inspired by the work of infamous tabloid photographer Weegee, The Naked City was the first major Hollywood production to be shot entirely on the streets of New York, making use of more than a hundred authentic locations. Both films feature stark cinematography and taut writing to land an incredible one-two punch that remains impactful to this day.