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Bad Girls of Film Noir, Vol. 2 (Night Editor / One Girl's Confession / Women's Prison / Over-Exposed)

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews


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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Cleo Moore, Audrey Totter, Jan Sterling, Ida Lupino and Janis Carter. Forgery, adultery, theft, blackmail and murder. The Bad Girls of Noir are back, in Volume 2, and these gorgeous gals with malice in their hearts are sure to thrill hard-boiled fans of Noir. Fan favorite Cleo Moore finally gets her due in three films that highlight the talents of the beauty who was compared to Marilyn Monroe, but whom fans love for her earnest, if stilted portrayals of dim-witted gals who can't catch a break. Four films, restored and re-mastered are all new to DVD, and sure to provide plenty of excitement for the noir aficionado. Watch out for these gals, they're dangerous--which makes them oh, so fun to watch.

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Though this series is devoted to the Bad Girls of Film Noir, volume 2 is mostly a tribute to one dangerous female in particular--cult favorite Cleo Moore, whose sultry charms were put to fine use in thrillers like On Dangerous Ground (and lesser films) throughout the 1950s. Moore works both sides of the noir fence in this double-disc set; in the perilously campy Women's Prison (1955), she's a gutsy con who offers to rescue naive new inmate Phyllis Thaxter from hard-bitten warden Ida Lupino. The presence of both actresses, in combination with such noir/B favorites as Audrey Totter and Jan Sterling, and some hysterically over-the-top dialogue and scenarios, make the film a must-see for devotees of psychotronic cinema. But in 1953's One Girl's Confession, Moore straddles the line between good girl and bad. Here, she pinballs from one heel to another in an attempt to avenge her father's wrongful death; director Haas is the latest unsavory type to swindle her and in turn, incur her wrath. One of several quickie melodramas Moore made with budget auteur Haas, Confession is an oddity, driven by barely concealed lusts and quirky morality plays, and in its own threadbare way, the most fascinating of the films in the set. However, Moore's best showcase in volume 2 is 1956's Over-Exposed, which follows her savvy B-girl up the ladder from nightclub performer to TV show host with the help of reporter Richard Crenna. Of course, Moore's past comes back to haunt her in the end, but it's worth noting that, given more to do than just look good in tight costumes, she could deliver as an actress. The set is rounded out with Night Editor (1946), a ripe slice of pulp with William Gargan as a thick-skulled PI whose involvement with cold-blooded society girl Janis Carter may send an innocent man to jail for murder. Though its machinery creaks and groans mightily under the weight of so much cliché, the little-known Carter is a terrific noir fatale.

Extras comprise trailers for each of the films save for Night Editor, and a 1954 episode of Ford Television Theatre with Moore showing off her predatory side in pursuit of returning vet Dane Clark. --Paul Gaita


Special Features

  • Remember To Live-All Star Theatre Episode

  • Product Details

    • Actors: William Gargan, Janis Carter, Jeff Donnell, Cleo Moore, Hugo Haas
    • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, NTSC, Subtitled
    • Language: English
    • Subtitles: English
    • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
    • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
      PLEASE NOTE:
      Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
    • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
    • Number of discs: 2
    • Rated:
      NR
      Not Rated
    • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
    • DVD Release Date: February 9, 2010
    • Run Time: 300 minutes
    • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
    • ASIN: B002YNQEFG
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #23,621 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
    • Learn more about "Bad Girls of Film Noir, Vol. 2 (Night Editor / One Girl's Confession / Women's Prison / Over-Exposed)" on IMDb

    Customer Reviews

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    By calvinnme HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on December 6, 2009
    Format: DVD Verified Purchase
    I've seen all of these films before, but never realized they were Columbias until now. I always figured they were the work of bigger studios. Mainly using unknown directors and stars, these noirs deliver in both plot and atmosphere. The only one that is a little odd and formulaic is "Women's Prison", but it is still an OK film. The four films in this set are:

    Night Editor (1946) directed by Henry Levin - The best film noir with stars and a director you've probably never heard of. As a result of that, you've probably never heard of this film. A married cop is having an affair. One night while out with his mistress, they witness a murder. The cop wants to come forward with the information he has, but realizes his life will be ruined when it gets out why he was at the scene at the time. The mistress, however, doesn't have any problem with keeping quiet.

    One Girl's Confession (1953) directed by Hugo Haas - The largely unknown Haas also wrote and starred in this film, but fear not, this is no Ed Wood movie. Cleo Moore stars as Mary Adams, the badly treated employee of a man who owns a run-down cafe. The man has cheated her father out of his money several years before, so she steals a large sum from him, hides the money, turns herself in, confesses but claims she has spent the money, and serves a small jail term. She figures she'll later be free to spend the money she should have had in the first place since the money is safely hidden. Or is it? A very good and ironic noir.

    Over-Exposed (1956) directed by Lewis Seiler - Cleo Moore again stars, this time as Lila Crane, a dancer who gets hauled in one night because the place she works for is running an illegal operation. A journalist/photographer takes her picture and she demands it back.
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    This collection of "film noirs" from Columbia Pictures is really exciting news for fans of the "bad girl" genre for three of the titles star the "Queen of the B Movie Bad Girls" herself, Miss Cleo Moore!! Cleo Moore (1928-1973) was a sexy blonde with a fabulous figure who unlike most blonde bombshells in Hollywood starred in film noirs rather than comedies or musicals. During the 1950's she was fairly famous and popular if never rising above B star status starring in almost a dozen sexy films, minor releases from major studios. Cleo sadly did not live to see her achieving cult status during the 1990's with these pulp novel movies and fans have had to hunt for these movies which only once in a very blue moon would play on cable but now at last three of them brought together in a DVD set appropiately enough titled "Bad Girls of Film Noir".

    My small complaints are (1) the generic artwork cover is not very attractive, surely one of those sensational vintage movie posters that were so essential in selling "bad girl" movies to the public in the 1950's would have been a better choice and it's particularly distressing to see the cover girl, whoever she is, is not Cleo given that she stars not only in three of the four movies here but also the bonus item, a 1954 television drama. I also think the 1946 picture NIGHT EDITOR starring the likable Janis Carter is not quite a correct match for this set given it's a decade older than the other films, one wonders why Sony didn't go whole hog and give us four Cleo Moore movies, or at least make the fourth film one starring one of her contemporaries. An ideal choice would have been THE BURGLAR(1957) starring another one of the great 50's sexpots, Jayne Mansfield, in her only film at Columbia.
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    I thought this set was better than vol 1, even though it sells for less. In Night Editor, Janis Carter steals the show with a knockout performance. William Gargan lacks emotional conviction in his lethargic performance. Women`s Prison although a little dated today and somewhat "hollywood", was a real winner with it`s outstanding cast, especially Ida Lupino. Over Exposed (barely a film noir) is a good melodrama, but with Cleo Moore who cares. One Girl`s Confession is another Cleo Moore film. Again, borderline film noir but well worth seeing. Also there is a 30 min. TV program with Cleo Moore, which I haven`t watched yet.
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    Like all of the other reviewers, I am an avid film noir fan; so it was with delight that I purchased this set at a discount. However, I cannot in good conscience grant the same rave reviews that many of the other reviewers bestowed. Still, I am glad that I purchased this collection. As the films are all B-Movies, you don't expect top notch dialog and acting or elaborate set pieces. In fact, the lack of polish often adds to the enjoyment of the genre. As long as you don't expect "The Third Man" or "Double Indemnity" these little offerings can make for fun viewing.
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    By Panzermann on February 22, 2012
    Format: DVD Verified Purchase
    Four fun B movies (short, low-budget, little-known actors) with varying degrees of noir elements.

    Night Editor is the one film of the group that is most clearly a prototypical noir with all the fixin's. Here, a homicide detective witnesses a murder while stepping out on his wife and finds himself in a terrible ethical jam. This one plays up the link between sexual arousal and violence surprisingly explicitly for a Code-era film. Janis Carter is memorable as a truly nasty piece of work--talk about your femmes fatales! And if you're asking yourself while you're watching, "What's with this lame framing device with the newspaper editors?" be patient because it does play a significant thematic role at the end.

    One Girl's Confession features a truly awkward and implausible plot element close to its climax, but the film is really the Hugo Haas show: not only did he write, produce, and direct it, but he utterly steals all the scenes he appears in as actor. A memorable performance in a rather clunky film.

    To call Women's Prison a noir would be quite a stretch: it's really a prison melodrama with Ida Lupino as the emotionally repressed and heartless warden. The female inmates and a kind-hearted male staff doctor stand up to her in their own ways with an action-filled climax.

    Over-Exposed stars the very healthy Cleo Moore in an interesting role: her urge to get ahead and be self-sufficient leads her to make questionable choices, drive away the man she should probably be gravitating towards, and eventually end up in real danger. Most of the film plays like a Joan Crawford "woman's picture" crossed with a bit of Sweet Smell of Success and only interjects some dark noir/gangster elements at the very end.

    Nice prints overall, minimal extras.
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