To celebrate #Noirvember, we select one essential film from each of the peak years of classic American noir.
"...For most of the 1940s and 50s, th[e] [film noir] style of crime film was dominant. You can spot them by their shadowy visuals and shady morals. Hard-talking men fall for duplicitous dames, as cigarette smoke wreaths around them on dark street corners or in rooms with the slatted blinds pulled down.
Hot on the heels of the Great Depression and the traumatising violence of the war, film noir reflected a world-weary fatalism in the American mood (and in the many European émigré filmmakers who had fled to Hollywood). The movies borrowed angular lighting effects from 1920s German films and a poetic gloominess from 1930s French films, wrapping it all up in tantalising packages of grit, glamour and cynicism.
Here's one key film from each of the influential cycle's peak years."