Friday, May 22, 2015


(Post 28 of 50)

The tough guy in a trench coat and a snap brimmed hat played by Robert Mitchum is trying to go straight. He's got a new life and a new girl, but his past comes back to haunt him. Other classic noir elements include: the beautiful but deadly dame played by Jane Greer, the crime boss played by Kirk Douglas who keeps sucking Mitchum back into his old life, the dark setting and tone from director Jacques Tourneur, and of course that snappy dialogue from screenwriter Daniel Mainwairing. We also get a complicated plot that is more than a bit confusing at times, but as long as you can kind of keep up with who is double crossing who and what the motivations of the characters are, you'll be alright. 

And the Elisha Cook Jr. supporting player award goes to…Kirk Douglas. Like Humphrey Bogart, Kirk Douglas went through a period of playing supporting roles. This was only his second movie, but he already shows a lot of the charisma that would quickly lead him into becoming a headline star. 

And let me also give an acknowledgement to former Little Rascal Dickie Moore, who plays a deaf-mute gas station attendant. 


  1. If anybody ever asked me to define noir i would just answer: Out of the Past.
    Not only the defining movie, but also the best and that is a tough race.

  2. That would be at tough choice to pick one. I'm still partial to Double Indemnity, but it isn't an easy choice.