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    Sunday, August 09, 2009

    Passings: Budd Schulberg and John Hughes

    It’s facile to compare the lives of two people who die within days of each other. Individuals whose names would ordinarily never be spoken in the same sentence are irrevocably joined. They’re linked only through quirks of fate and the calendar, yet the mind can’t help making connections, drawing parallels.

    Budd Schulberg died on Wednesday after a full life at the age of 95. His legacy includes What Makes Sammy Run, one of the essential Hollywood novels. On the Waterfront, which he wrote, remains both a gripping drama and a maddening artifact of a troubled American era. (Schulberg testified voluntarily before HUAC and named others working in Hollywood who had been members of the Communist party in the 1930s.) A Face in the Crowd, with its homespun media demagogue, has lost none of its prophetic power. Schulberg’s long tenure as a boxing correspondent yielded the novel (and eventually the film) The Harder They Fall.

    John Hughes died on Thursday, too young at age 59. He had largely retreated from filmmaking. Every few years there would be a swirl of rumors that he’d return to directing, and I always hoped he would.

    I was a teenager during Hughes’s glory years in the 1980s, so you’d think that his movies meant the world to me. You’d be wrong. I still haven’t seen Sixteen Candles in its entirety. My first exposure to The Breakfast Club was on VHS at a friend’s “movie party.” I didn’t succumb to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off until late in its run. I actively resisted the Hughes oeuvre at the time. I didn’t need movies about adolescent misery by some pandering adult; I was living it. (I was a pretentious little ass in those days. I’m a pretentious big ass now.) It’s a tribute to Hughes’ particular genius that my blind impulse for self-preservation is one he would have readily understood.

    The Breakfast Club may be glib, but its depiction of high school is unerring. We cling to our labels even as we long to shed them. Bueller is Hughes’ greatest achievement, a daft charmer about the porous boundary between youth and adulthood. You can worry to excess as a kid – it will surprise no one to learn that Alan Ruck’s Cameron was the first movie character I ever truly identified with – and you can forget as a grown-up that taking time for yourself is easy and vital. The Vacation movies, or the first and third ones at any rate, expose the truth that parents are slaves to expectation as much as their offspring are. They’re also funny as hell.

    It’s unfair to knock Hughes for the narrow focus of his films. Life got small before the pictures did. Schulberg wrote about the wider world, about the complex systems of institutions and the demands they make on individuals, because he could. Hughes took as his subject the everyday woes of white suburban teenagers and the white suburban parents they became, because by the 1980s that was all audiences cared about. (I warned you upfront that these comparisons would be facile.) Each man engaged with the issues of his day and thus helped to define his era. I bow my head to mourn them, as well as a time when movies were more interesting.

    Read Schulberg’s essay on his experience of working with F. Scott Fitzgerald. Thanks to Ed Gorman. Also read about Hughes’ uncommon generosity to a young fan.

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    Wednesday, January 14, 2009

    Ricardo Montalban (1920-2009)

    In the late actor’s long career, there were several distinct phases. Stardom in Mexico. Making waves with Esther Williams. “I am Mr. Rourke, your host.” Soft Corinthian leather. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. An entire generation of kids now knows him as the grandfather from the Spy Kids movies. Not many performers stay relevant for so long.

    But you know the Montalban who will be celebrated here: the hard-boiled one. The undercover federale working hand in hand with an American agent to bust an immigrant smuggling ring in Border Incident. The small-town cop faced with big city murder and willing to take a chance on the boys in the lab in the proto-CSI Mystery Street. The detective itching for some of his crooked partner’s action in The Money Trap. All good movies made better by Montalban’s charismatic presence.

    Mark Evanier has a story about working with Ricardo Montalban that’s a good one.


    Sunday, January 11, 2009

    On The Web: More Westlake

    The Rap Sheet collects memories of and tributes to Donald E. Westlake from dozens of crime writers in two posts. Also, a reminiscence by director Stephen Frears, Westlake’s collaborator on The Grifters, and Westlake talks to Ed Gorman about the return of Parker.

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    Sunday, January 04, 2009

    Book: The Hunter, by Richard Stark (1962) & More Westlake

    On some scores, I am as good as my word. I said that I would reread the new University of Chicago reissue of The Hunter that I picked up the day before Donald E. Westlake died, and I did. It’s not like it was difficult; everything Donald Westlake wrote goes down smooth. Some random thoughts.

    The book is meaner and even darker than I remember. It’s plain that Mr. Westlake didn’t intend to start a series that would last 40 years with this novel, but the intervention of an editor changed that.

    A passage that leapt out on this reading:

    He could look out at the street, and let his fifteen-cent cup of coffee cool. It was a Park Avenue coffee shop, and expensive. Pastrami on rye, eighty-five cents, no butter. Like that.

    Like that. That phrase is an example of how, as Lee Goldberg noted, Mr. Westlake “wrote books that inspired people to become authors.” He made it look effortless.

    The Hunter, like many Westlake books, is so attuned to the city of New York that it can be plotted on a subway map. So far it’s been filmed twice, as a definitive Los Angeles movie and then in Chicago.

    Point Blank was acclaimed for its Nouvelle Vague-influenced storytelling, but the structure deployed in the Parker novels – four sections, with three from Parker’s POV and the fourth from other characters related to the job at hand – is every bit as impressive, with a formal rigor of its own. The Hunter features one of its more dazzling uses. Parker attempts to gain entry to a building, and things go wrong. Horribly so. Westlake generates tremendous suspense from this sequence even though we already know that Parker’s target is no longer in the building.

    Over the weekend I also reread “Fugue For Felons,” a short story from the 2004 collection Thieves’ Dozen (eleven stories, natch) that showcases Mr. Westlake at his most inventive. Fearing that he might lose the rights to the name of his character John Dortmunder to Hollywood, he wrote a tale featuring a “parallel universe” version of the hangdog thief. The only problem is John Rumsey didn’t behave in quite the same way. It’s a treat. And it features one of Mr. Westlake’s trademark observations that strikes particularly close to home, about the New York subway:

    ... and the poor G, the Brooklyn-Queens crosstown, which never gets into Manhattan at all but just shuttles back and forth between Brooklyn and Queens, full of people wearing hats.

    Tributes to Donald Westlake are all over the web, many of them collected at Sarah Weinman’s Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind. I’d recommend the ones by Duane Swierczynski and Max Allan Collins. But the most astonishing is by Ethan Iverson of The Bad Plus, who carried on a longtime email correspondence with Mr. Westlake. If you’re a fan, it’s a must-read.

    And I’ll echo Jeffrey Wells and say that now more than ever, we need a quality DVD of 1973’s The Outfit. Not only does it feature a cast of noir legends like Robert Ryan, Marie Windsor, Timothy Carey, Jane Greer and Elisha Cook, Jr., it’s also the Parker movie that Donald Westlake himself said was his favorite.

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    Thursday, January 01, 2009

    Donald E. Westlake (1933-2008)

    A sad start to the new year. Donald E. Westlake died late yesterday.

    Mr. Westlake was one of my all-time favorite authors. More than that, he was one of the best. Named a Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America, and considered one of the greatest writers of the 20th century by some critics.

    But their opinion doesn’t matter when the novels make their own case. His older ones are forever being reprinted and finding new audiences. I just picked up the University of Chicago reissue of The Hunter on Tuesday.

    I admired him for so many reasons. His versatility. Writing wry comic capers under his own name, then offering the genre’s photo negative as Richard Stark, books that live up to the pen name. His longevity. Starting in the pulps and ending his career with some of his strongest work, like 1997’s The Ax, a book I’ve been thinking of a lot these last few months. His ability to work in different mediums. He cowrote the script for the marvelous thriller The Stepfather and was nominated for an Academy Award for his adaptation of Jim Thompson’s The Grifters. His matchless skill at capturing the rhythm and flavor of life in New York City. A Westlake coinage – “Harya” – is still my greeting of choice.

    I never met Donald E. Westlake, but I felt like I knew him. I’m certain that I’m going to miss him. I’m going to start rereading The Hunter right now.

    When a fresh-faced guy in a Chevy offered him a lift, Parker told him to go to hell. The guy said, “Screw you, buddy,” yanked his Chevy back into the stream of traffic, and roared on down to the tollbooths. Parker spat into the right-hand lane, lit his last cigarette, and walked across the George Washington Bridge.

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    Monday, November 24, 2008

    John Michael Hayes, R.I.P.

    The screenwriter, who died on November 19 at age 89, had a remarkable career. The highlight was easily the four consecutive films he wrote for Alfred Hitchcock in the mid-1950s: Rear Window, The Trouble With Harry, To Catch A Thief, and the remake of The Man Who Knew Too Much. This impressive run led to a falling out with Hitchcock; in Hayes’ words, “we parted because I was being too identified with him.” Hayes would make out just fine on his own, receiving an Academy Award nomination for his adaptation of Grace Metalious’ Peyton Place and writing the script for Butterfield 8.

    I reread the interview with Hayes in Patrick McGilligan’s Backstory 3 this morning. In it, Hayes recounts his relationship with Hitchcock, the reasons for his fade from Hollywood in the 1960s, and his surprise return to movie theaters at age 75 with 1994’s Iron Will. The piece ends with Hayes being asked about a rumored sequel to his greatest achievement, Rear Window. I love his response. It’s the answer of a true professional.

    I was offered an absolutely monumental sum of money by the man who owns the rights ... That money would help me in my old age ... I don’t know. Some pictures have a magic that’s almost indefinable. Grace is gone. Hitch is gone. Jimmy’s too frail. Wendell Corey’s gone. Raymond Burr is dead. We couldn’t recapture that kind of innocence. What could it possibly be?

    But I’ve done a story, just in case.

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    Saturday, September 27, 2008

    Paul Newman, R.I.P.

    The life itself is the tribute. All I can do is point to favorite movies.

    Considering what’s talked about around here, I have to lead off with Harper. The two Fast Eddie films. Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid. The Sting. Slap Shot. The Verdict. Still throwing heat in 1994’s Nobody’s Fool.

    But I want to single out a pair of films from late in Paul Newman’s career that might be overlooked today, but that mean a lot to me. The Hudsucker Proxy may be regarded as minor Coen Brothers but it’s a New Year’s tradition around here, thanks in part to Newman’s performance. And his turn as Louisiana governor Earl K. Long, besotted with a stripper in Blaze, is a thing of beauty. Ron Shelton makes movies about the two most adult subjects: sex and compromise. Newman fearlessly puts both front and center.

    As a wise man once said: “Get that lumber in his teeth! Let ‘em know you’re there!”

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    Tuesday, June 24, 2008

    DVD: Devil-Ship Pirates (1964)

    Time for more Jimmy Sangster. Some Hammer Studios swashbucklers he worked on are part of Sony’s new Icons of Adventure DVD set. (Thanks to Fred Blosser, a regular at Ed Gorman’s blog, for bringing these movies to my attention.)

    The first movie on the disc, 1962’s Pirates of Blood River, isn’t seaworthy. That’s not a Gene Shalit-style pun. Owing to its low budget, Blood River is the first pirate movie set completely on dry land. After some dodgy history, one cool piranha attack, and a few dull fight scenes, I gave up on it.

    But Jimmy only provided the story for Blood River. He wrote the superior Devil-Ship Pirates. He’s also got a ship this time around, even if it spends most of the movie moored near the moors. (OK, that was a Gene Shalit-style pun. What the hell’s the matter with me today?)

    Christopher Lee, in fine menacing form, plays the skipper of a privateer in service of the Spanish Armada. When the ship is damaged in battle, Lee is able to steer it to an isolated English village. The plan: convince the townspeople that the Armada has defeated the Royal Navy long enough to repair the vessel and escape.

    As plots go it’s a gem, and Sangster finds ways to complicate matters nicely. There’s the lord of the manor in full I for one welcome our new insect overlords mode. And the ship’s sole Spanish naval officer, who slowly realizes that his choices are death at the hands of the English or a life of piracy.

    The disc includes commentary from Sangster and other Hammer veterans, plus additional extras. It’s a well-produced package for some lesser-known films.

    George Carlin, R.I.P.

    I don’t have much to add to the many tributes to the late, great comedian all over the web. I can only say that I had tremendous respect for George Carlin as a writer, performer, and thinker. Particularly because he came from a sensibility I understand, namely New York Irish Catholic. Carlin made me realize it was OK to look at the world askance, to take nothing at face value. I always thought of him as the hipster uncle who’d show up occasionally and say, “Don’t sweat it, kid. It’s all bullshit anyway. You want some of my beer?”

    HBO will be rebroadcasting Carlin’s comedy specials in the coming days. And here’s Carlin’s last in-depth interview. Hat tip to Arts & Letters Daily.

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    Monday, March 31, 2008

    Jules Dassin, R.I.P.

    It was just last week that we lost actor Richard Widmark. Now comes word that Jules Dassin, who directed Widmark’s best film Night and the City, has died at age 96.

    Dassin led an extraordinary life. He started as an actor in New York’s Yiddish theater – his name may have sounded French, but he was Julie Dassin from Connecticut – then moved to the other side of the camera. In the wake of the blacklist he went to Europe and managed to maintain, even reinvent his career. His greatest success was probably 1960’s Never On Sunday. Dassin would end up marrying the movie’s star Melina Mercouri, and both would be nominated for Academy Awards. Mercouri would go on to become Greece’s Minister of Culture.

    But it’s Dassin’s impressive body of crime dramas that will earn him a place in cinema history. Name a subgenre and Dassin not only contributed to it, he helped define it. The prison film (Brute Force). The policier (The Naked City). Two landmark noirs, Thieves’ Highway and Night and the City. During his European sojourn, he would direct a pair of essential heist movies, Rififi and Topkapi. An amazing string of films.

    Ed Gorman and I talked about Night and the City in the wake of Widmark’s death here. And here’s a vintage Dassin interview. Via GreenCine.

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    Wednesday, March 26, 2008

    Richard Widmark, R.I.P.

    One of the last links to the classic age of film noir has been severed with the passing of actor Richard Widmark at age 93.

    Regular readers know that Widmark was a favorite around here. Watch his landmark performance as cackling psychopath Tommy Udo in 1947’s Kiss of Death today and it still feels breathtakingly modern; Widmark, with his utter disregard for generating sympathy and his wealth of telling detail, seems to be inventing an entirely contemporary style of acting before your eyes. There’s his turn in Samuel Fuller’s Pickup On South Street, as a pickpocket up to his jittery eyeballs in a Communist spy plot who responds to appeals to patriotism with, “Don’t wave the flag at me.”

    And then there’s his Harry Fabian in Night and the City. It was only last month that I saw it during a Widmark double bill at Noir City. It’s a movie that only grows in my estimation with each viewing, largely because of Widmark’s brave, spare work in the lead role. Performances don’t cut any deeper than that one.

    The New York Times obituary features some terrific quotes and a great sense of the man’s life. Richard Widmark will be remembered, and missed.

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    Tuesday, February 12, 2008

    WGA Strike: Hello, Grindstone

    The strike is over. My pencil is up. Also, I’m ready to go back to work.

    When official word came, I symbolically cut the strike bracelet that’s been on my wrist since November. I have plenty left; they were cheaper by the gross so I gave them away to friends and colleagues. Maybe I’ll sell the rest on eBay.

    Book: Gas City, by Loren D. Estleman (2008)

    The latest by Estleman is, simply put, a thing of beauty. A big rollicking story anchored by perfectly scaled details. The long-serving chief of police in a fading Midwestern metropolis decides after his wife’s death to upend the genial system of corruption in which he has been a more than willing participant. Gas City gives us a cross-section of urban life – mobsters, politicians, press barons, clergymen, even a disgraced cop turned part-time pimp – and has them jockey for position against the backdrop of a hunt for a serial killer.

    Estleman is as good a stylist as we have in any genre, and his dialogue is sharp enough to make me laugh out loud. It’s only February, but here’s one of the year’s best.

    R.I.P., Roy Scheider

    Not too long ago, I watched Scheider in 1986’s 52 Pick-Up for the first time. And was reminded again of why I’d always been a fan. Scheider was an easy but alert presence on screen, always thinking, never phony.

    For some reason that 52 Pick-Up piece attracted a lot of attention, and became the most-read post in this website’s history. It even turned up in a newspaper’s online tribute to Scheider. That makes me happy. What would make me happier would be a DVD release of Last Embrace, featuring a Scheider performance that deserves to be remembered alongside his work in The French Connection, Jaws, Sorcerer, and All That Jazz.

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    Tuesday, July 31, 2007

    Passings: Ingmar Bergman, Tom Snyder

    One was a signature cinematic artist of the twentieth century. The other hosted some TV. Guess which one I’m going to talk about.

    Far more intelligent people than me have eulogized Bergman’s passing. A thorough overview can be found at GreenCine Daily. More importantly, Bergman’s legacy will last as long as humanity does. You could sit down with any number of his films this evening in the comfort of your own home.

    But Tom Snyder’s legacy is already fading. Here’s how I know: I’m completely unfamiliar with what Tom Snyder is most famous for. I never saw a minute of The Tomorrow Show. It was before my time. When I finally caught up with Dan Aykroyd’s send-ups of Snyder years later, I had no idea who he was mocking.

    I got to know Snyder from his mid-‘90s CNBC show, which I became weirdly obsessed with. Specifically the opening segment, when Tom would talk about his day. Spending the afternoon with his mother, griping about some ad he’d seen on TV. It was a fleeting moment of humanity on television, the equivalent of chatting with your neighbor over the fence. At times he could be self-involved or overbearing, but so can we all. What came through was Snyder’s desire to use the medium to connect.

    He was saddled with a lot of second- and third-tier guests on that show, but evinced a genuine curiosity about them that made the interviews more interesting than whatever was on the late night line-up. He maintained the same standard when he took over the slot after David Letterman.

    That show is now ably hosted by Craig Ferguson. After author Ken Bruen’s recent appearance on the program, Peter Rozovsky at Detectives Beyond Borders bemoaned that there was no venue on television for serious conversation with writers. I came to Ferguson’s defense, but Peter’s point is well-taken. A Tom Snyder interview with Ken Bruen would have been something to see.

    I did encounter Tom Snyder once before his CNBC stint. He wrote the foreword to An Edge in My Voice, a collection of essays by frequent Tomorrow Show guest Harlan Ellison. It’s a book I read repeatedly in high school and college. Snyder writes:

    “For years, I have written for television news programs. I think much of it has been pretty good, but if I set it down right here in front of you, few would remember a word of it. That’s because television news writing disappears rapidly. It comes on, it goes off, and it disappears. It doesn’t lie around gathering shelf dust for years and then one rainy night beckon your curiosity from the booktable ... The good pieces I wrote for television would always be a private satisfaction to me. The dumb ones – the really horrid crap I had dashed out with no thought and less preparation – those were gone and forgotten and nobody would ever know of them and thank God for that.”

    There you go. A bit of Tom Snyder’s writing that wasn’t forgotten, at least not by me.

    Edward Champion wrote a post about Snyder last week that features several Tomorrow Show clips. Other tributes come from Mark Evanier, Ken Levine, and Ed Gorman. And watch a Bergman film at your convenience.

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    Tuesday, April 03, 2007

    Donald Hamilton, R.I.P.

    I suppose it’s only fitting that I learned about the death of novelist Donald Hamilton at the Mystery*File blog. It was two articles that appeared in the magazine that convinced me to give his Matt Helm books a try. I still haven’t read The Wrecking Crew, but it’s close at hand and I’ll be diving into it soon enough. I worship Dean Martin, but the Helm movies are a caricature of what Hamilton accomplished on the page.

    Some of my usual web haunts do a far better job of remembering the man. Steve Lewis looks back at The Ambushers and hints at the possibility of one last go-round for Helm. Plus more from Bill Crider and The Rap Sheet.

    Upcoming: Art House Freak Outs!

    I noted in my previous post that Alejandro Jodorowsky’s hallucinogenic western El Topo was almost impossible to see. Looks like I spoke too soon, because it’s scheduled for release on DVD next month. I assume a direct dial number to the closest mental health facility is among the bonus features.

    WR: Mysteries of the Organism, the damnedest movie I’ve ever seen and the highlight of my “The Body In Film” class, will be getting the full Criterion treatment. I’m going to have to revisit this one.

    Movie: The Lookout (2007)

    Scott Frank gets my vote for America’s best contemporary screenwriter. Turns out he’s a fine director as well. Some guys have all the luck. The Lookout is a smart, taut, lived-in thriller. With roles in this film, Brick and the much-delayed Elmore Leonard adaptation Killshot, Joseph Gordon-Levitt is becoming this generation’s noir icon. Greencine has an interview with actor and director, as well as co-star Matthew Goode.

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    Tuesday, March 27, 2007

    Book: The Spoiler, by Domenic Stansberry (1987)

    Baseball season kicks off Sunday evening with the Mets and Cardinals in an NLCS rematch. That may be one of my few chances to catch the Amazin’s on TV, as it’s increasingly likely that MLB’s Extra Innings package won’t be on cable. (Senator John Kerry, you disappoint me again.) So it’s MLB.tv for me. Like I don’t spend enough hours in the day staring at my computer screen.

    I warmed up for the season opener by reading this debut novel from Edgar-winner Domenic Stansberry. A reporter on the run from a failed marriage finds himself in a Massachusetts mill town with a struggling minor league team, a spate of arson fires, and some surprising connections between the two. It’s not just a good crime novel, it’s a good baseball novel, a good newspaper novel, a good small-town novel.

    Get ready for the season yourself by singing along.

    Movie: 300 (2007)

    My take on the movie, mainly so I can link to some others: It’s kind of nuts. But the gonzo quality is part of writer/director Zack Snyder’s vision. I’m still not sold on the CGEverything™ concept, and there’s not much of a story. (In a nutshell, 300 Spartans hold off the Persian hordes – until they don’t.) But I wasn’t bored.

    Here’s John Rogers on the movie’s screenwriting, Archeology Magazine on the historical perspective, and Michael at 2Blowhards on the critical hand-wringing the movie has spawned plus much more.

    John P. Ryan, R.I.P.

    The veteran character actor never had a breakout role but worked steadily, often with director Bob Rafelson. He’ll always be remembered around here for two performances: as the gangster with a soft spot for another man’s moll in Bound, and as a hard-ass prison warden in one of the great films of the 1980s, Runaway Train. No doubt he’s bellying up to the bar in tough guy heaven at this moment.

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    Friday, February 16, 2007

    Richard S. Prather, R.I.P.

    The creator of swingin’ private eye Shell Scott has died. The Scott books are a blast, a dizzying blend of hardboiled and uproarious. Plus they’re packed with sex that’s actually sexy. Richard Prather had a way with the risqué that will be sorely missed. I picked up a trove of these books on eBay and dole them out one at a time. Sometimes I get in a funk where the only cure is Shell Scott.

    Mr. Prather lived to see his acclaimed novel The Peddler reissued by Hard Case Crime. I picked it up recently but haven’t read it yet. Rest assured I’ll get to it soon.

    Steve Lewis has a fine tribute up at the Mystery*File blog. I will pay my respects to Mr. Prather the best way I know how, by rerunning the cover of his novel The Scrambled Yeggs, which accounts for half the traffic I get at this site.

    Again, for the record: yes, Shell is spanking that woman.

    Miscellaneous: Burning Questions

    Why do people feel compelled to write corrections into library books? And why are those corrections always wrong?

    TV: The Next Round of Lattes Is On Simon Cowell

    Everyone involved with American Idol said the show’s Seattle auditions were the worst ever, yet five of this year’s 24 finalists are from here. On behalf of the city, I say: nyah.


    Sunday, January 07, 2007

    Book: Dead Horse, by Walter Satterthwait (2006)

    It’s always nice to have the first novel of the year be a winner. But it’s hard to go wrong with Walter Satterthwait, whose Phil Beaumont/Jane Turner books are an unalloyed treat.

    Dead Horse is about Raoul Whitfield, the Black Mask veteran who was the highest-paid mystery writer of the late 1920s. His second wife, Emily, was a socialite who made their lavish life on the desert ranch of the title possible. Then Emily committed suicide – or so it would appear. The question of what really happened to her that night is only one of the mysteries raised in Walter’s evocative book.

    My experience with Whitfield is limited to his 1930 novel Green Ice. I’d been told that it and Paul Cain’s Fast One were the most hard-boiled books ever published. I still haven’t tracked the Cain down, but I did dig up a copy of Green Ice. Hard-boiled it is, so much so that parts of it are indigestible. But Walter’s book has me ready to take another crack at it.

    A.I. Bezzerides, RIP

    What a remarkable 98 years the man had. He wrote the novels Long Haul (filmed as They Drive by Night) and Thieves’ Market (which became Thieves’ Highway). He penned the screenplays for On Dangerous Ground and the great Kiss Me Deadly. And in his spare time he created TV’s The Big Valley. Two documentaries were made about him in 2005. I’d be happy to see either one.

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