Every film that has ever been nominated for an Academy Award in any category. Enjoy!
The Naked City
The soul of a city. Her glory stripped! Her passion bared!
The Naked City portrays the police investigation that follows the murder of a young model. A veteran cop is placed in charge of the case and he sets about, with the help of other beat cops and detectives, finding the girl's killer.
The Naked City is a film noir detective story nestled within a semi-documentary city symphony film. The story, itself, involving a murder of young model, stolen jewelry and an acrobatic wrestler is enjoyable enough (highlighted by a humorous performance from Barry Fitzgerald as Det. Lt. Dan Muldoon), but the cityscape is the main attraction.
This is cinematographer William H. Daniels's film!
The beginning of Jules Dassin's The Naked City features some of the greatest aerial shots of NYC in stunning black-and-white. Actually, just, some of the greatest aerial shots of any city on film, rivaling Henri Alekan's gorgeous black-and-white aerials from Wings of Desire.
Aside from the aerials Daniels also expertly captures the city on the ground once the film's…
or, The Power of a Great Ending.
A very atypical noir that suffers in some area - namely script - but delivers (and better yet, innovates) in most others, with a denouement that is not just technically great filmmaking, but delivers a climax that brings a catharsis that you didn't think this movie had up its sleeve and contextualises it in this brilliant way, ending with that memorable line that in many ways has eclipsed the film itself, such is how often it's been appropriated since. The film is about how these stories and events in all our lives make us lose any sense of perspective - this case has an incredible impact on a small group of individuals, but…
There are eight million stories in the naked city. This has been one of them.
The Naked City is a police procedural noir film that is directed by Jules Dassin with an almost documentary style visual with outstanding cinematography by William H. Daniels centered on a fantastic character performance by Barry Fitzgerald. This near masterpiece in the genre is almost ruined however by an unnecessary and intrusive narration by the film's producer.
I feel bad saying this, as producer Mark Hellinger considered this his love letter to New York City and passed away before it's release, but his narration almost ruined the entire experience for me. He doesn't narrate the film as a character or even an unknown…
Yes it's flawed, mainly in the pointless and sometimes annoying narrative, but The Naked City is full of all the great noir conventions, creating an eerie atmosphere, building suspense, and unveiling a tense climax through the maze of New York City.
The structure of the film is certainly one of the things that stuck out in my mind. The way it opened and closed with shots of the city creating a melancholy feeling that time has gone by, but nothing has changed. The photography (all on location) is something to marvel at, spiralling the viewer into the doomed city that has many more tales to be told.
Noir fans- check this out!
This movie is something of an oxymoron. It cares deeply about the mechanics of a police investigation yet makes frequent tangents to things unrelated to the case. But both of those things are what make this film so unique in the crime/police genre. And all of it is tied together with an omniscient voiceover that adds yet another distinctive quality to the film. The epilogue is one of the all-time best in cinema.
I won't say New York City is the main character in the film but it certainly is the focus. Dassin shoots it all on location: from hot, musty offices in Downtown Manhattan to the top of the Williamsburg Bridge. The film almost doubles as documentary of what…
A really good looking procedural that benefits tremendously from on-location shooting. New York City appears idyllic and dreamlike, filmed in its natural 40s environment. Photographer William H. Daniels deservedly won an Oscar for his beautiful, classically composed cinematography. It is the first reason to see The Naked City. The second is to watch the unfolding of the murder case with its episodic nature of collecting information, influential to filmmakers like Alan J. Pakula or later with David Fincher. The story's easy to follow with the help of the smooth voice of a nameless narrator. The developments play realistic to the period, pull no punches and are above all quite informative in conveying 60+ year old investigating where tons of leg work and man power took precedent in an age before computers.
Authentic and entertaining, The Naked City is absolutely the godfather of the police procedural. From the documentary-style narration that bookends the film to the twisty-turny plot, to the incredible cast of detectives, led by the Irish actor Barry Fitzgerald. There are even a few lines where I hoped Fitzgerald would pull some shades from his pocket while Roger Daltry let out that wonderful scream.
The film plays like a noir, but with more likable protagonists (in fact, they aren't shown to be flawed at all) and less stylistic lighting, in favor of more simplistic camera angles. This allows for more straight-forward storytelling, which is the Naked City's greatest strength.
There's so much good going on here it's a hard thing, choosing which angle to commence with the complimenting.
There are eight million stories in the noir cinema. This has not been one of the best.
Just don't let it be your first Jules Dassin film, because he was much better than this.
I wish Mark Hellinger would leave his stupid comments in his pocket. He sounds like my mom watching a movie.
Middling and overly melodramatic. Having recently seen Rififi, it's a bit difficult to see a common thread between Dassin's work.
Quite exciting way to make a film, but it was a bad try. Bad acting and simple story. But the last 20 minutes was pretty interesting, and because of that I gave the film ★★★ and not ★★.
Good idea, bad try
The proof that the academy awards are a fraud... One for photography and one for montage, the only two parts of this work that are really mainstream and almost boring at times. Solid detective story with well placed comical tones. One to watch for every fan of a good police drama.
The Naked City is one of the best films to contain a character that isn't a human. Yes, as the title hints at, NYC becomes a living character, containing all of the human characters within it.
The city is very alive here, with kids, vendors and salesman in the streets and people walking everywhere. This city-as-a-character approach is brought to us from the very beginning through narration, but it's not until the end of the film where the culmination of its character comes into a maximum impact.
But that's not to say the film leans on this aspect, as the human characters are great too. My favorite has to be Barry Fitzgerald as the Irish detective. He provides depth and…
Police procedurals from the late 40s are just about my favorite type of movie and this is probably my favorite of those, so logic tells me that this must therefore be my favorite movie.
- The Racket
- 7th Heaven
- Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans
- Chang: A Drama of the Wilderness
- Grand Illusion
- Seven Samurai
- The Lady Vanishes
- The 400 Blows
The entire Criterion collection organized by spine number.
I don't know why I did this.
Number I've Seen: 160/739
- Grand Illusion
- Seven Samurai
- The Lady Vanishes
- Crook's Tour
UPDATED: August 26, 2014
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…