7.3/10
123
2 user

The Rules of Film Noir (2009)

Documentary that shows the characteristic traits of film noir and their historical context.

Writer:

Matthew Sweet
Reviews

Photos

Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?

Learn more

More Like This 

The Big Combo (1955)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A police lt. is ordered to stop investigating deadly crime boss Mr. Brown, because he hasn't been able to get any hard evidence against him. He then goes after Brown's girlfriend who despises him, for information instead.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: Cornel Wilde, Richard Conte, Jean Wallace
The Best of Film Noir (Video 1999)
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Uses over 30 film clips and interviews about the tough guys and the femme fatales to illustrate the aspects of the film noir genre. Jeffrey Wells discusses _Big Sleep, The (1946)_, Touch of... See full summary »

Stars: Lauren Bacall, James Bacon, Humphrey Bogart
Detour (1945)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Chance events trap hitch-hiker Al Roberts in a tightening net of film noir trouble.

Director: Edgar G. Ulmer
Stars: Tom Neal, Ann Savage, Claudia Drake
Film Noir (2007)
Animation | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Private detective Sam Ruben's clever plan falls apart with the onset of amnesia. Everyone is trying to kill him and he doesn't know why. The classic film noir milieu now comes to you in the form of an animated feature.

Directors: D. Jud Jones, Risto Topaloski
Stars: Mark Keller, Bettina Devin, Roger Jackson
Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Rough city cop Jim Wilson is disciplined by his captain and is sent upstate, to a snowy mountain town, to help the local sheriff solve a murder case.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Ida Lupino
Stars: Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan, Ward Bond
Gun Crazy (1950)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A well meaning crack shot husband is pressured by his beautiful marksman wife to go on an interstate robbery spree, where he finds out just how depraved and deadly she really is.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: John Dall, Peggy Cummins, Berry Kroeger
Dream No Evil (1970)
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

In a surrealistic horror setting, a young Preacher's assistant goes mad and becomes lost in a fantasy of her own creation.

Director: John Hayes
Stars: Edmond O'Brien, Brooke Mills, Marc Lawrence
Animation | Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A 3D-animated movie set in Paris in the year 1910 and centered on a monster who lives in a garden and his love for a beautiful, young singer.

Director: Bibo Bergeron
Stars: Matthieu Chedid, Vanessa Paradis, Gad Elmaleh
Manson (1973)
Documentary | Biography | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Documentary on Charles Manson and his family. Has a number of insightful interviews with many family members most notably Squeaky and Sandy (Blue and Red). There is also a history of Manson... See full summary »

Directors: Robert Hendrickson, Laurence Merrick
Stars: Mary Brunner, Vincent Bugliosi, Bruce Davis
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

With visually striking elements and never-heard-before recording session outtakes, award-winning composer and music historian Howard Goodall looks back at the creation and ongoing influence of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band".

Director: Francis Hanly
Stars: Howard Goodall, The Beatles, Paul McCartney
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Matthew Sweet Matthew Sweet ... Himself - Presenter
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sheri Chinen Biesen Sheri Chinen Biesen ... Herself - Author, 'Blackout: World War II & the Origins of Film Noir'
Neil Brand Neil Brand ... Himself
Sarah Churchwell Sarah Churchwell ... Herself
Roger Deakins ... Himself
John Mathieson ... Himself
George Pelecanos George Pelecanos ... Himself
Paul Schrader ... Himself
Adrian Wootton Adrian Wootton ... Himself - Director of Crime Scene Festival
Edit

Storyline

Matthew Sweet explores his rules of 1940s and 50s American film noir thrillers: *Choose a dame with no past and a hero with no future *Use no fiction but pulp fiction *See America through a stranger's eyes *Make it any colour as long as it's black *It ain't what you say, it's the way that you say it Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 August 2009 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

BBC Scotland See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Black and White (archive footage)| Color
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Features Nosferatu (1922) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A very good programme from BBC which will bring nostalgia to film noir lovers
22 April 2010 | by amarvSee all my reviews

The music in background is the nostalgic classic jazz. Everything is in black & white. Matthew Sweet gets out of a car & says this "Dark, isn't it? You better get used to it. For the next hour, this is how the world is going to be. THIS IS THE WORLD OF FILM NOIR. It's a dark American place with a fancy French name. A place where the sun has died & people get buoy with Neon, where the only pleasures to be had are from bourbon & the satisfaction of knowing that life is a cheap little game in which everyone plays dirty". I immediately knew that the next hour is going to be a superb fun ride & boy! Am I delighted by the end of the programme.

This BBC programme, narrated by Matthew Sweet, deals with the wonderful world of film noir. The word film noir invokes different things to different people. If I have to say 3 things that flash in my mind in a nanosecond, they would be unbelievable shadows, tobacco smoke & Put the blame on Mame. Isn't Rita Hayworth ravishing in Gilda? I would love to know the 3 things that come to your mind first when you hear the word 'film noir'.

In the programme, we get a brief history of film noir & the things that make a film noir unique. Some of the people involved with film noir telling about their understanding & also walking through few of their memorable scenes. You could see the names of the people in the programme here. Matthew Sweet sure loves talking about film noir.

Also in the one hour, there are scenes from a minimum of 25 films which makes you completely nostalgic after seeing this. I actually wanted to mention all the names of films in this but saw no point in it because this covers almost all of the classics.

Coming to the title of the programme, most of the people have their own rules for film noir. What we have here are the following 5 rules of film noir according to Matthew Sweet.

1. Choose a dame with no past and a hero with no future 2. Use no fiction but pulp fiction 3. See America through a stranger's eyes 4. Make it any colour as long as it's black 5. It ain't what you say, it's the way that you say it

Matthew Sweet's ending lines for the programme were "In film noir, life seems to get cheaper by the minute. It's every man & woman for themselves and that's horrifying but it's intoxicating too because maybe a little part of us believes that that's how the world really is & that's why we can't tear our eyes from the shadows & why more than half a century later we keep on staring into the dark."

This is a must see programme for all film noir connoisseurs. Seeing most of the stars of the film noir in 1 hour is really great. Even if you don't know anything about film noir, you could learn a few things about the wonderful style of film-making that is film noir.

Warning: Since the programme contains many clips from so many films, some of the clips may act as spoilers for you if you haven't watched them. In fact I'm yet to see many of these movies. So I skipped when they were showing scenes from the movies that I'm yet to see. So watch with discretion.

You know what I'm going to do now? I'm going to watch The Maltese Falcon.


8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 2 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed