50 fantastic films, 50 amazing faces
July 10, 2010, 5:46 pm
Filed under: 50 amazing faces, 50 fantastic films

“the grifters” (u.s. 1990), director: stephen frears, born leicester, england (1941), with angelica houston, born santa monica, california (1951), [above], john cusack, and annette bening

probably the second best neo-noir film made in america. the french came up with the term  film noir for american “b” movies made in the 1940’s and ’50’s. film noir litterly means dark or black cinima, and is probably explained by just writing the titles of two american movies: “double indemnity” (with joan crawford), and “the postman always rings twice” (with lana turner and john garfield). those “b” films, redeemed by the french are now considered classics. if you have seen them, and they are unescapable if you watch more than a few films, then you will understand while later, when color filmstock was available, directors wanted to tried their hand at gritty crime thrillers. that is when neo-noirs started. pictotmat won’t reveal the very best of this catagory quite yet, we want you to keep returning and see the list of fantastic films increase.

but … getting back on track. “the grifters” from a tough little book by jim thompson (who wrote “the killer inside me”, a 2010 neo-noir) is blessed with a wonderful cast, and a tricky little con (a grifter is a con artist). stephen frears, the director (“my beautiful launderette”, “dangerous liaisons”, “high fidelity”) loved jim thompson’s novel of “the grifters” because it felt “as if pulp fiction meets greek tragedy”. that best describes the film, too.


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