I’ve been reading a lot of books on film-noir, as of late. It is Noirvember and reading about the films I’ve been watching helps make the cinematic style easier to navigate.
This book is massive though. It took longer than usual for me to get through this 400 page book because it has so much information to absorb. It really leaves no stone unturned and I didn’t want to miss any detail. It covers well more than a hundred different films in the noir style and is the most comprehensive thing I have read on film-noir.
There are a lot of good books on the subject but this is like an encyclopedia. I also liked how it was organized, in themed chapters regarding the overall narrative and then presented in release order within those chapters. The chapters were broken down into two chapters about men vs. women and then solo chapters on The Private Dick, A Cop’s Life, The Best-Laid Plans, Victims of Circumstance and The Unsprung Mind. There is also an epilogue that covers the neo-noir films that started appearing after film-noir’s classic run.
David J. Hogan really did his homework and it shows. This massive book should have a home in the library of any true noir fan. The book is easy to navigate, with a great index, just in case you need to go back and look at stuff for research reasons.
Buy it. Read it. Cherish it.