Wednesday, January 16, 2013

HE WALKED BY NIGHT - "The Work Of Police Like That Of Woman, Is Never Done!" (1948)

I can't help it, I love film noir movies, so I guess Wednesdays have evolved into Murder Mystery Film Noir Thriller Action Adventure Nights! This fantastic Japanese poster has nothing to do with tonight's film, except for the title, but it sure is cool! Here's a bit of the opening narration to properly set the mood!

Actually, sometimes he walked around in the daytime too! The trick was just not to get caught!!

For some reason besides being in black and white, this shot looks like it came right out of a "Twilight Zone" episode!

John (HIGHWAY 13) McGuire is an off-duty cop headed home for the night when he spots something suspicious going on, so he decides to stop and ask a few questions!

You wanna see my military discharge papers? BANG!!! Richard Basehart is not such a nice guy in this movie! In fact, he's not nice at all! He's a cruel heartless killer! Based on a real crime story, the city of L.A. is now minus one officer!

Looks like any second Commissioner Gordon is going to send out the Bat Signal!!

Dum Da Dum Dum, Dum Da Dum Dum Dum!  I'm just giving you the facts! "He Walks By Night" was a precursor to TV's "Dragnet" starring none other than that man there with the stare, Jack Webb!

"He Walked By Night" might not be a monster movie, but here's a pair of characters that some of the best monster movies couldn't have done without,  Thomas Browne (EARTH VS.THE FLYING SAUCERS, BEGINNING OF THE END, 20 MILLION MILES TO EARTH, BRAIN FROM PLANET AROUS, BLOOD OF DRACULA, THE THING THAT COULDN'T DIE, SPACEMASTER X-7, HOW TO MAKE A MONSTER) Henry on the left, and Whit (CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, TARGET EARTH, INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF, I WAS A TEENAGE FRANKENSTEIN, MONSTER ON THE CAMPUS, Bissell on the right. Between these two guys, they have 492 TV and movie credits! Unfreakinbelievable!!

Here's how you take a simple shot of a guy standing in a doorway, and make it into something special!

Tough guy Richard Basehart has to painfully  remove his own bullet!

"He Walked By Night" doesn't have very many females in it. Carlotta Monti has a small role as a liquor store customer. Earlier in her career, Carlotta was a theatergoer in "King Kong!"

Back in the good olde days, without the help of computers, they had to figure out things the hard way like matching up shell casing rubs!

The cops just can't figure out what this guy looks like, so all the witnesses are gathered together to try and put a composite sketch together, and it comes out pretty damn close!

Great little shot of absolutely nothing!

Even evil bastard killers enjoy the company of man's best friend! Dog's just don't  know how to be judgmental! Give them some food and a little attention and they're your friend forever!

Pretty futuristic looking, I think you will agree! L.A. storm drain tunnels put to very good use, just like the B.A.R.T. tunnels in "THX 1138!"

There is absolutely no reason not to watch "He Walked By Night!" You can find it at the fantabulous Internet Archive right here to watch or download to your heart's content for free, so there are literally no excuses not to!


Dick said...

Excellent Movie,one of the best film-noirs ever. Also check out T-Men & Raw Deal - more Anthony Mann & John Alton greatness.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

Thanx Dick! Will have to check them out!!


TABONGA! said...

Damn, I want to do a painting of that shot of absolutely nothing!

Anonymous said...

Carlotta Monti is best remembered (at least by me) as the longtime sweetheart of W.C. Fields- a job that not that many people would apply for. I've never seen her in a film. I need to see this.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

Indeed she was, and Carlotta was also in a couple of W.C. Fields movies too, like "Man On The Flying Trapeze," and "Never Give A Sucker An Even Break!"


Anonymous said...

When I saw this movie, I was kind of surprised at the abrupt ending. After the final showdown, I was half expecting to see something like a sanitation worker sweeping the street, and the narrator saying something like, "There are five million stories in the City of Angels, and this has been one of them." That's because I saw it on TCM, back-to-back with Naked City. The two movies had similar openings (narration describing the city and its police department), so I expected the endings to be similar, too.

I think it was while making this movie that Jack Webb got interested in producing a police procedural (i.e., realistic, documentary-style) radio and TV series. An LAPD detective, who served as a technical advisor on He Walked By Night, helped Webb get permission to look at LAPD case files, and those were used for stories on Dragnet.

The case depicted in He Walked By Night seems eerily similar to the Christopher Dorner rampage years later.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

Thanx Mr. Anonymous! More than anything, we like extra information, and that's good stuff!

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