The 11th annual Noir City Film Festival starts Friday, Jan. 25th, running through Feb. 3 at the Castro Theatre in San Francisco.
That’s right, Noir City, where the fog crawls down cold streets of broken dreams; hard-boiled dames drink their scotch neat, and mugs with nothing to lose are perpetually on the run – from the cops, the two-bit hustlers, the private dicks, even themselves – an ambiguous, black-and-white world captured on 35-caliber reels of celluloid fired off at 24 hot frames per second.
Opening night features “Gun Crazy” (1950) starring Peggy Cummins, who is flying in from her home in England for her first SF visit in decades. After the screening, Film Noir Foundation kingpin Eddie Muller will interview Ms. Cummins onstage.
“Gun Crazy,” which has been said to be inspired by the real-life saga of Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker, may have influenced Jean-Luc Godard’s “Pierrot le Fou” (1965), and of course, Arthur Penn’s “Bonnie and Clyde” (1967).
Some of “Gun Crazy’s” sensibility can also be seen in Terrence Malick's “Badlands” (1973), David Lynch’s “Wild at Heart” (1990) and Oliver Stone’s “Natural Born Killers” (1994). Even Ruben Fleischer explicitly mentioned the film in regards to “Gangster Squad” (2013), although the connection appears to refer to a shared timeframe rather than plot.
Check out the heist scene from "Gun Crazy" HERE.
Twenty-seven films will be shown at this year’s festival, including four FNF world premiere restorations: “Try and Get Me!” (1950), “Repeat Performance” (1949), “High Tide” (1948), “The Chase” (1946) and “Native Son” (1951), starring and written by Richard Wright.
Other highlights include a 4K digital restoration of “Sunset Boulevard” (1950) and two films shot in San Francisco: “The Sniper” (1952) and “Experiment in Terror” (1962), which features a climatic scene shot at Candlestick Park during a Giants-Dodgers game. Back then, the ‘stick was still a baseball stadium and hadn’t been modified to accommodate football and garlic fries. Both films screen on Wed., Jan 30.
Also look for 4K digital restorations of two early 3-D movies: “Inferno” (1953) and “Man in the Dark” (1953) on Friday, Feb. 1.
Noir City Nightclub
A noirish night of burlesque, music, dancing and $5 cocktails at Noir City Nightclub will be in full swing Saturday night, Feb. 2 at the Regency Lodge on Van Ness. Eddie Muller will emcee this year’s party.
Eddie recently co-hosted “A Night of Noir” with Robert Osborne on TCM. Muller will be presenting more films this month on Bill Arney’s must-see Cheese Theatre, which airs weekly on Saturday nights on Bay Area cable. More info HERE.