Tuesday, April 24, 2018

2018 Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival Opens in Palm Springs on May 10th

The 2018 Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival opens in Palm Springs on Thursday, May 10th.

The festival, which runs through Sunday, May 13th, takes place at the Camelot Theatres, located at 2300 East Baristo Road.

I'm happy to announce that again this year I'll be providing complete coverage of the festival, with "as it happens" Tweets during the festival and a detailed recap of the festival once it's over.

I was fortunate to attend the Arthur Lyons Festival in both 2015 and 2017 and had a wonderful time. I enjoy attending several film festivals each year, and this one is definitely the most relaxed, with no lines, comfortable seating, and time for a meal at one of the many nearby restaurants in between screenings.

The films are presented by festival host and programmer Alan K. Rode, along with the Film Noir Foundation's Eddie Muller. This year's festival will also feature a quartet of special guests, detailed below along with a rundown of what to expect at this year's festival. (Click any hyperlinked title in this post for my past review.)

Opening night will feature a screening of Robert Mitchum in FAREWELL, MY LOVELY (1975), with special guest Jack O'Halloran, who plays Moose Malloy in the film. I admit I'm also excited because he was in SUPERMAN (1978)! This will be my first time to see FAREWELL, MY LOVELY, so it's a great way to start the festival.

Friday morning kicks off with a 10:00 a.m. screening of the enjoyable LARCENY (1948), starring John Payne, Joan Caulfield, and Dan Duryea.

After lunch I'm very much looking forward to seeing THE TURNING POINT (1952), starring William Holden, Edmond O'Brien, and Alexis Smith. Paramount Pictures just did a new digital restoration which debuted at the Noir City Festival in Hollywood; I couldn't be there that evening so I was quite happy to see it turn up on the schedule for Palm Springs.

THE UNSUSPECTED (1947), which I saw at UCLA in February, has a marvelous cast, include Claude Rains, Joan Caulfield, Constance Bennett, and Audrey Totter. It was directed by Michael Curtiz, and as I've mentioned here before, Curtiz is the subject of a terrific new biography by festival host Alan Rode.

Friday evening wraps up with a film I've been wanting to see for quite a while, THE WEB (1947), starring Edmond O'Brien, Ella Raines, William Bendix, and Vincent Price. (It's rather fun that Friday alternates between Joan Caulfield and Edmond O'Brien films!) There will be a post-film Q&A with Vincent Price's daughter Victoria.

Saturday morning begins with Alan Ladd in CHICAGO DEADLINE (1949). I enjoyed this one at last year's Noir City Festival; I don't think I could ever get enough of Alan Ladd on a big screen so I'm happy to watch it again.

The second film of the day is a new UCLA restoration of THE RED HOUSE (1947). THE RED HOUSE was directed by Delmer Daves and has quite a cast, including Edward G. Robinson, Judith Anderson, Rory Calhoun, Julie London, and Lon McCallister. I'm really looking forward to seeing this one for the first time.

I'm also enthused about taking a second look at THE MAN WHO CHEATED HIMSELF (1950), starring Lee J. Cobb, Jane Wyatt, and John Dall. I enjoyed this one tremendously at last year's Noir City Festival, and since that time the film has been restored. I'm looking forward to seeing the restored print, all the more so because last summer I was able to visit one of the movie's key locations, Fort Point in San Francisco.

(Side note for those who can't make it to Palm Springs: THE MAN WHO CHEATED HIMSELF will air on TCM's Noir Alley series on June 23rd and 24th, and later this year it will be released on Blu-ray by Flicker Alley.)

One of the other films I especially look forward to is the Saturday night screening of WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION (1957), which I haven't seen in years. The festival will host a very special guest, cast member Ruta Lee, who will reminisce about her experiences working on the film, which stars Tyrone Power, Charles Laughton, and Marlene Dietrich, directed by Billy Wilder.

Sunday, the final day of the fest, is a three-movie day, beginning with UNDER THE GUN (1951) at 10:00 a.m. It stars Richard Conte and Audrey Totter, two names which are certainly enough to get me to the theater bright and early that morning! This is yet another film I'll be seeing for the first time.

Victoria Mature, who was present in the audience at last year's festival, will be present for a Q&A after the screening of KISS OF DEATH (1947), starring her father, Victor Mature, along with Coleen Gray (with Mature at left), Richard Widmark, and Brian Donlevy. KISS OF DEATH is one of my all-time favorite film noir titles, and I've never seen it on a big screen. Seeing it in that format with Victoria there to talk about her father should be a very special experience.

The festival will conclude with another film directed by Michael Curtiz, FLAMINGO ROAD (1949), starring Joan Crawford, Zachary Scott, and Sydney Greenstreet. I had been disappointed I was unable to see this new-to-me title at UCLA earlier this year so finding it on the Palm Springs schedule was a great surprise.

I'm very enthused about the schedule, which for me personally will be a great mix of old favorites and several new discoveries. I strongly recommend attending this festival; any classic film fan is guaranteed to have a fantastic long weekend immersed in some wonderful movies.

For those considering attending for the first time, we've enjoyed staying at both the Courtyard by Marriott, which is the official festival hotel, and the Best Western Plus Las Brisas.

Our favorite places to grab a bite between movies include Bill's Pizza, Sherman's Deli, and, for breakfast, Elmer's, the only California location of a chain we enjoy on our visits to Oregon.

Please visit the festival website for additional information and tickets; in addition to the festival "all-access pass," tickets may be purchased for individual screenings.

Hope to see some of my readers in the desert next month!

Update: The 2018 Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival in Review.


Blogger Margot Shelby said...

You are so lucky that you can go to all these LA festivals. I wish I could.

The Unsuspected is great, and The Web is a fun movie with a fabulous Ella Raines. You'll like it.
And I love Flamingo Road which is wonderfully campy trash in the best Crawford tradition.


8:29 AM  
Blogger Walter S. said...

Laura, I really hope that you enjoy THE RED HOUSE(1947). Like Margot Shelby, I'm envious of you being able to see these great movies on the big screen. I'm sure you have read plenty about THE RED HOUSE and it is one of my all time favorite movies. I missed being able to watch it for years, but I finally made a VHS copy of it off of broadcast TV in the 1980's. It is like no other noir mystery. It is set in rural America and not the traditional city. This was a unique film experience for me personally, because it brought back some childhood memories. Enjoy.

9:39 AM  

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