The Falcon Takes Over (1942)

A loose adaptation of Chandler’s Farewell My Lovely with George Sanders as the Falcon instead of Marlowe, which more or less means the same plot but instead of Marlowe muttering we have Sanders kissing all the girls — almost literally! And he swans about in his white tie and tails about which I’ve no complaint….

Spook Racket: Psychic Mafia

Oddly enough in the seemingly endless line of grifters and con artists in and around the spook racket, I had not read this volume. I first ran across the BBC radio series on it — part of their ongoing fascination with grifters like Anna Delvey. Lamar tells his story (with Spraggett’s help) with relish, albeit…

Scoundrel for a Sunday

THE PRIVATE AFFAIRS OF BEL AMI (1947) I’m a bit mystified how I never got around to this film until recently. I adore George Sanders and no one plays a better scoundrel than he does. Add to that a luminescent Angela Lansbury at her very dewiest beauty and some great women’s roles, and — well,…

Matinee: The Magnificent Dope (1942)

Farran Nehme (@selfstyledsiren) started a wonderful thread of golden recommendations on Twitter the other day, so I bookmarked a few things for when I had a spare moment. This came up first early Sunday morning because it was a the first time I could fit something in (yeah, back on dad duty) because I thought…

Classic Crime: The Witch’s House

Taking the day off is a good time to catch up on some fiction reading as I have almost no time for reading lately except work which is mostly non-fiction. I can forget what it’s like to read without making notes or checking footnotes and sources, stopping to make notes of what else I need…

Blithe or No

BLITHE SPIRIT (2020) An impulse purchase this week: I suspect it was the subliminal effect of the tarot spread in the cover image. And I like Judi Dench. And Dan Stevens. And I love Coward, the snap and crackle of his dialogue. Certainly the play could use an update — like removing all the casual…

#FolkloreThursday Review: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

SIR GAWAIN AND THE GREEN KNIGHT (2021) Reppion & Penman No, I haven’t got around to the film. The blu-ray sits on a pile back in NY whilst I am idling in Michigan. So I was gratified to get an advance copy of the new comics version of this terrific medieval story AKA the only…

Neo-Noir: Julia (2008)

JULIA (2008) dir Erick Zonca An A-list star takes a role in a crime film that offers a chance to slum it as a low-life in a downward, drunken spiral amongst the neon flicker of dive bars and low-rent flop houses. A recipe for Oscar-bait — well, if you’re male. If you’re Tilda Swinton, not…

Highsmith @ 100: A Game for the Living

Highsmith spent some time in Mexico trying to write whilst living cheaply. This is her only novel that takes place there. Dorothy Hughes did not think highly of this effort, nor that Highsmith had much success in capturing the country and its people (something Hughes managed with much more insight and finesse). Highsmith had no…

Review: The Witch of Kings Cross

THE WITCH OF KINGS CROSS Writer/Director: Sonia Bible The story of Rosaleen Norton is not very well known outside Australia, even among the pagan world. I was lucky that a friend who was a huge fan introduced me to her art in the 90s. Powerful stuff, it is, too. With occult, spiritualist, and surreal art…