As a teenager, I discovered Stanley Kubrick. It was 2001: A Space Odyssey that did it. Captivated, I immediately sought out Dr. Strangelove, one of the greatest black comedies ever created. The villain is General Jack D. Ripper, who takes matters into his own hands during the Cold War and orders a nuclear strike on Russia. He is played by the great Sterling Hayden, who I saw again as I delved into Kubrick's early films. His first few efforts fell into the genre of film noir, one of which is the heist film The Killing, starring Hayden as Johnny Clay, mastermind of the operation.
Hayden has made quite a career in the world of film noir, and tomorrow, the very last of the Louisville Film Society's Film Noir Wednesday series, you, gentle reader, can see two such examples.
First up is The Asphalt Jungle, directed by John Huston (The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The African Queen). It tells the story of a group of men who get together for a jewel heist, which turns sour as everyone starts to realize no one can be trusted and everyone is out for themselves. The film features a minor role by the then-unknown Marilyn Monroe. The Asphalt Jungle will screen at 7:00.
This is followed at 9:00 by Suddenly, directed by Lewis Allen and starring the one and only Frank Sinatra, as John Baron, an assassin leading a group of men who take over a small town home in a plot to kill the United States president as he travels through. Sterling Hayden stars as Tod Shaw, a policeman intent upon preventing the carnage.
It all happens tomorrow, Wednesday, at the Dreamland Film Center, located at 810 E. Market Street. Admission is $8 per film or $10 for the double feature. LFS members enter for free. Complete information can be found at the Louisville Film Society website.
Image: Internet Movie Database