NIGHTMARE ALLEY
1948, 20th Century Fox, 110 min, USA, Dir: Edmund Goulding

An ambitious carnival barker (Tyrone Power) moves from a mind-reading act with carny veteran Zeena (Joan Blondell) to performing the same act in an upscale nightclub with his new, ex-carny wife (Coleen Gray). He consequently becomes involved in scamming a wealthy man with the help of a duplicitous psychiatrist (Helen Walker). Widely regarded today as a classic noir thriller, NIGHTMARE ALLEY was Power's own project and gave the actor his best role. He was up to the task, delivering the greatest performance of his career. Unfortunately, his boss, Darryl F. Zanuck, panicked when he saw the leading man he had so carefully made into a superstar playing a low-life. He gave the film no publicity, never pushed the film or actors for any awards and quickly withdrew it from circulation. The film was ahead of its time – its grit and cynicism are perfect for today's audience.


RED RIVER
1948, MGM Repertory, 133 min, Dir: Howard Hawks

Cattle baron John Wayne and foster son Montgomery Clift (in his first film) take 'em to Missouri but fall into conflict along the way in director Hawks' seminal Western classic, in which the director commands the epic as well as the intimate. With Joanne Dru, Walter Brennan, Coleen Gray, and music by the great Dimitri Tiomkin.


THE KILLING
1956, Park Circus/MGM, 83 min, Dir: Stanley Kubrick

Kubrick’s tough-as-nails heist film about a robbery at a racetrack features an incredible rogue’s gallery of great character actors, including Sterling Hayden, Coleen Gray, Elisha Cook Jr., Marie Windsor and Timothy Carey. One of the most entertaining crime films ever made, propelled by Kubrick’s no-nonsense approach and screenwriter Jim Thompson’s biting, chiseled-in-stone dialogue.


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