Google+ Badge

January 30, 2013

PEGGY CUMMINS STARS IN NOIR CITY 11 - SHE'S THRILL CRAZY!



Courtesy Photo - Noir City 11


SHE’S THRILL CRAZY, KILL CRAZY - AND GUN CRAZY!

THE SILVER SCREEN

It’s a dark, rainy night on a badly lit street. There is a neon Hotel sign that blinks off and on. It’s already creepy. A boy (14 years old) tries to get out of the rain in a hardware store.  He sees a Gun in the Window. The boy is mesmerized by that Gun. He tries to steal the Gun and he runs out with the gun. He slips on the wet pavement. A Sheriff grabs the kid. The boy goes to court. His sister Ruby in court to the Judge says: “Im not only his big sister, but mother and father too – I’ve been trying to take care of him but I guess I never earned enough to buy the things for him that other boys have.” The Judge sizes up the boy – and puts the boy on probation. The boy grows up, and meets the woman of his dreams. She’s a carnival sharpshooter (Annie Laurie Starr) portrayed by 24-year-year old Peggy Cummins. She’s a clever blonde who is constantly scheming on how to get money and shoot at people. This movie was the pre-curser of “Bonnie and Clyde”. Peggy Cummins is still alive and looks stunning even today. She attended the opening night at the Castro Theater – Noir City 11.

CURSE OF THE DEMON

Not so much of a “Noir” movie, but an interesting one. This is a strange and rare movie that takes place in a foggy and chilly countryside. Stonehenge has something to do with it. The movie in its day was probably very scary. Now-a-days – it’s more comic than serious. In the movie is Peggy Cummins (who was in big demand in those black and white days on the screen.) This is a séance sequence, a central villain and a stormy Halloween party. And, oh yes – there is a laughable hypnosis session – that comes to a violent ending. Is it Corny? Of course it is – but to this day, the film 50 years later still scares you in that foggy mansion.

HELL DRIVERS
Underrated British Film

This is a pretty damn good realistic drama about an ex-con (Stanley Baker). He gets out of the slammer and seeks a job. He gets the job, but finds out later that he works for a crooked haulage company. The Boss and his foreman have been cheating the driver of lots of money. Not to mention – that the new hires are forced to work in extremely dangerous conditions.

The cast is very strong. Stanley Baker, exposes his corrupt boss, and Patrick McGoohan really knows how menace just about everyone. If ever there was a psychopath. He would just love to crash into your truck so that he can be in the lead. If you look closely, you will see a very young Sean Connery.

Peggy Cummins also has a Star role in this film. The trucks that the guys had to drive looked very dangerous and in a bad state of maintenance. I asked an Englishman what brand were the Trucks? He said: “They were Dodge Semi Forwards with diesel engines.” Well, they sure as hell got a beating. Exciting  stuff  for Truckers. This flicker is smouldering and vengeful. It’s right up your Alley. Get out the Gravel.

The films were shown at the 11th annual  San Francisco Film Noir Festival Thru Feb. 3, 2013. NOIRCITY.COM.  Thanks to Czar Eddie Muller – Programmer: Anita Monga – Noir City Announcer, Bill Arney – And the Film Noir Foundation. And of course – Thanks to the fantastic Castro Theatre.  

MORE TERRIFIC BLACK AND WHITE MOVIES  AT THE CASTRO THEATER 

JAN. 31: BAD GIRLS NIGHT; THE COME ON (Stars Anne Baxter); FRI. FEB. 1: 3-D NOIR - MAN IN THE DARK (Edmond O'Brien). CORNELL WOOLRICH TRIPLE BILL! - SAT. FEB 2. - STREET OF CHANCE, THE CHASE AND THE WINDOW. 'ALL GREAT SUSPENSE FILMS'. CATCH THEM WHILE YOU CAN AT THE CASTRO. 

(((Lee Hartgrave has contributed many articles to the San Francisco Chronicle Sunday Datebook and he also produced a long-running Arts Segment on PBS KQED))) 

   


Post a Comment