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"Method of this work:
literary montage.
I have nothing to say only to show."
(Passagenwerk (1927 - 1940) - Walter Benjamin)

2005, Jul 19; 21:04 ::: History of Men's Magazines Volume 6 (2005) - Dian Hanson

History of Men's Magazines Volume 6 (2005) - Dian Hanson [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Volume VI, the final word in this encyclopedic series, is reserved for the most daring and extreme edges of the publishing field. Here you’ll peek inside the adult bookstores of Denmark, Sweden, Germany, the US and Japan to see what sexual freedom really meant. --via Amazon.com

What you had emerging in the ’60s was over-the-counter and under-the-counter. When the laws loosened up a little we got a whole new group of men’s magazines that were not making it onto the newsstand, that were not following Playboy, not lifestyle magazines. So I divided the volumes as this: what was sold openly and what was sold clandestinely. As you move into the ’60s and into the ’70s you’ll find that there was more sold clandestinely, so that volume six will be the biggest of all, if we’re allowed to make it bigger. It’ll also be the most difficult to place [laughs]. In there we have things like Surrender to the Beaver and Warm Wet War Whore, Famous Anus, showing that pornographers never lacked for a sense of humor. -- Peter Landau of Mr. Skin interviews Dian Hanson via http://www.sexwrecks.com/2005/02/dian_hanson.html [Jul 2005]

see also: Dian Hanson - men's magazine - erotica

2005, Jul 19; 20:55 ::: How to Win Friends & Influence People (1937) - Dale Carnegie

How to Win Friends & Influence People (1937) - Dale Carnegie [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

This grandfather of all people-skills books was first published in 1937. It was an overnight hit, eventually selling 15 million copies. How to Win Friends and Influence People is just as useful today as it was when it was first published, because Dale Carnegie had an understanding of human nature that will never be outdated. Financial success, Carnegie believed, is due 15 percent to professional knowledge and 85 percent to "the ability to express ideas, to assume leadership, and to arouse enthusiasm among people." He teaches these skills through underlying principles of dealing with people so that they feel important and appreciated. He also emphasizes fundamental techniques for handling people without making them feel manipulated. Carnegie says you can make someone want to do what you want them to by seeing the situation from the other person's point of view and "arousing in the other person an eager want." You learn how to make people like you, win people over to your way of thinking, and change people without causing offense or arousing resentment. For instance, "let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers," and "talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person." Carnegie illustrates his points with anecdotes of historical figures, leaders of the business world, and everyday folks. --Joan Price

From the first chapter:
On May 7, 1931, the most sensational manhunt New York City had ever known had come to its climax. After weeks of search, "Two Gun" Crowley -- the killer, the gunman who didn't smoke or drink -- was at bay, trapped in his sweetheart's apartment on West End Avenue.

One hundred and fifty policemen and detectives laid siege to his top-floor hideaway. They chopped holes in the roof; they tried to smoke out Crowley, the "cop killer," with tear gas. Then they mounted their machine guns on surrounding buildings, and for more than an hour one of New York's fine residential areas reverberated with the crack of pistol fire and the rat-tat-tat of machine guns. Crowley, crouching behind an overstuffed chair, fired incessantly at the police. Ten thousand excited people watched the battle. Nothing like it had ever been seen before on the sidewalks of New York.

When Crowley was captured, Police Commissioner E. P. Mulrooney declared that the two-gun desperado was one of the most dangerous criminals ever encountered in the history of New York. "He will kill," said the Commissioner, "at the drop of a feather."

But how did "Two Gun" Crowley regard himself? We know, because while the police were firing into his apartment, he wrote a letter addressed "To whom it may concern." And, as he wrote, the blood flowing from his wounds left a crimson trail on the paper. In his letter Crowley said: "Under my coat is a weary heart, but a kind one -- one that would do nobody any harm."

A short time before this, Crowley had been having a necking party with his girl friend on a country road out on Long Island. Suddenly a policeman walked up to the car and said: "Let me see your license."

Without saying a word, Crowley drew his gun and cut the policeman down with a shower of lead. As the dying officer fell, Crowley leaped out of the car, grabbed the officer's revolver, and fired another bullet into the prostrate body. And that was the killer who said: "Under my coat is a weary heart, but a kind one -- one that would do nobody any harm."

Crowley was sentenced to the electric chair. When he arrived at the death house in Sing Sing, did he say, "This is what I get for killing people"? No, he said: "This is what I get for defending myself."

The point of the story is this: "Two Gun" Crowley didn't blame himself for anything.

Is that an unusual attitude among criminals? If you think so, listen to this:

"I have spent the best years of my life giving people the lighter pleasures, helping them have a good time, and all I get is abuse, the existence of a hunted man."

That's Al Capone speaking. Yes, America's most notorious Public Enemy -- the most sinister gang leader who ever shot up Chicago. Capone didn't condemn himself. He actually regarded himself as a public benefactor -- an unappreciated and misunderstood public benefactor. --from the first chapter

see also: 1937 - influence - paperback

2005, Jul 19; 20:39 ::: 1939: first paperback

Publishers gleefully compared the 1939 beginning of the contemporary American paperback revolution to that earlier French revolution. And students of the late 1950s and early 1960s were duly labeled “the paperback generation” – a baby boom of masses raised on Dr. Spock’s “The Pocket Book of Baby and Child Care” and inspired by copies of “Catcher in the Rye” that seemed engineered to fit in blue-jean pockets.

“You’ve got a business that hit a wall; it’s still a business, but no one can figure out how to make it grow,” said Jack Romanos, the president of Simon & Schuster, which owns Pocket Books, the paperback publishing house that started the business in 1939 with the experimental publication of “The Good Earth” and “Wuthering Heights.”

The contemporary history of the mass-market paperback in the United States dates to 1939, when Robert de Graff, an ambitious publisher, introduced a line of plastic-laminated books that sold for 25 cents each.

Within a few years, Mr. de Graff’s company, Pocket Books, and its kangaroo mascot, Gertrude, ushered in the paperback revolution, creating an alternative mass distribution network. It moved beyond the elite carriage trade of existing bookstores and turned to a sprawling network of magazine distributors who took books to where Americans walked – thousands of newsstands, candy stores, cigar shops and food stores.

So, if today’s readers are buying fewer paperbacks, where has there attention been diverted? One prevalent theory is that they are spending more time on competing diversions such as exploring the Internet. Albert N. Greco, as associate professor of business at Fordham University who follows the publishing industry, said there were indications some readers might be finding more entertainment on videotapes. In 1997, for the first time, consumers spent more on home videos than books, a narrow gap projected to increase through 2001, according to figures from the Statistical Abstract of the United States.

--Doreen Carvajal, New York Times, via http://archive.1september.ru/eng/1999/eng36-2.htm [Jul 2005]

In 1935 paperbacks made a comeback in England with the launching of the Penguin line, and four years later Robert de Graff, a New York publisher, started Pocket Books. Most publishers saw little threat from these upstart paperbacks and thus de Graff and others were able to obtain reprint rights to hardcover volumes for next to nothing. Among his first ten titles was the industry's first movie tie in. 'Wuthering Heights' was released simultaneously with Laurence Oliver's film. These were soon followed by the 1935 best seller 'Lost Horizons', Agatha Christie's 'The Murder of Roger Ackroyd', Shakespeare's 'Five Great Tragedies', and 'Bambi.'

Production costs were held down with large print runs and cheap glued-on binding. Each Pocket Book, complete with the Kangaroo logo, could consequently be priced at a bargain 25 cents. Even more important was de Graff's innovative distribution system, which placed his paperbacks through magazine wholesalers giving him access to drugstore, newsstands, variety stores, and bus and train stations throughout the country. The days of a special trip to the bookstore for reading material were over.

The publishing industry was astonished at the popularity of Pocket Books, as they practically sold themselves and helped to popularize reading in the United States. Indeed, the self-help classic, 'How to Win Friends and Influence People', became the company's first million seller. Interestingly enough, Dale Carnegie's hard cover edition sold equally well at bookstores for $1.96, demonstrating the existence of two distinct readerships. De Graff's books sold so well that for years to come all paperbacks were referred to as "pocket books." --http://www.paperbacks.com/history.htm [Jul 2005]

see also: 1939 - USA - paperback - publishing - books

2005, Jul 19; 19:37 ::: I killed more people tonight than I have fingers on my hands.

It was 1950. Senator Joe McCarthy announced that he had the names of 205 Communists working the in State Department. The first two members of the Hollywood Ten started serving prison terms for refusing to answer questions of the House Un-American Activities Committee, and in a cheap Mickey Spillane thriller, hero Mike Hammer tells a friend:

You know what, Lee, I killed more people tonight than I have fingers on my hands. I shot them in cold blood and enjoyed every minute of it. I pumped slugs in the nastiest bunch of bastards you ever saw . . .they were Commies, Lee. They were red sons-of bitches who should have died long ago. . . .

Witch hunts are about images and social control. They have typically occured during times of social upheaval as a way of re-affirming normative boundaries or providing social unity in the face of a perceived threat. Similarly, in the 1950s, the imagery of good against evil was played out in media portrayals, political rhetoric, public ideology, and legislation. In both, the public was whipped into a paranoid frenzy by the creation of mysterious alien demons, in which the ends justified the means in removing the scourge from the public midst. --Jim Thomas and Gordon Meyer via http://www.soci.niu.edu/~jthomas/papers/jt.joe [1990|Jul 2005]

During the presidency of Harry Truman, Joseph McCarthy's national profile rose meteorically after his Lincoln Day speech of February 9, 1950, to the Republican Women's Club of Wheeling, West Virginia.

McCarthy's words in the speech are a matter of some dispute, as they were not reliably recorded at the time, the media presence being minimal. It is generally agreed, however, that he produced a piece of paper which he claimed contained a list of known communists working for the State Department. McCarthy is quoted to have said "I have here in my hand a list of 205 people that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party, and who, nevertheless, are still working and shaping the policy of the State Department". McCarthy stated that he referred to 57 "known Communists," the number 205 referring to the number of people employed by the State Department who, for various security reasons, should not be. The exact number stated later became a matter of some importance when it was used as the basis of an accusation of perjury against McCarthy. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_McCarthy#Senator [Jul 2005]

see also: communism - pulp - 1950s - USA - McCarthyism - witch hunts - politics

2005, Jul 19; 19:07 ::: The Girl Hunters (1963) - Roy Rowland

The Girl Hunters (1963) - Roy Rowland [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Mickey Spillane plays his own creation, street-thug-turned-PI Mike Hammer, in this 1963 adaptation of his novel. The film opens with Hammer on the downside of a years-long bender, scooped out of the gutter by a bitter cop intent on prying information from a dying man. Inspired to clean up his act by the secrets he hears, Hammer hits the streets on a personal crusade to find the love of his life. Future Bond girl Shirley Earton costars as a glamorous society widow who goes slumming with Hammer. Spillane, who brings the grace of a trained monkey and the sex appeal of a Bronx cheer to the role, is less a stoic, tarnished street knight than a street bum at a cocktail party, but it works for the working-class pug. The low-budget production is a rare black-and-white CinemaScope picture, rough and messy but lacking the raw edge and gritty look of more accomplished crime pictures. B-movie veteran Roy Rowland directs with a lazy pace and a prosaic style that drags until he takes his camera to streets of New York City. The definitive Hammer remains Ralph Meeker in Robert Aldrich's Kiss Me Deadly, but Spillane makes a respectable runner-up. --Sean Axmaker for Amazon.com

Mickey Spillane
Frank Morrison Spillane (born March 9, 1918), better known as Mickey Spillane, is an American author of crime novels.

Early life
Spillane was born in Brooklyn, New York, and grew up in a tough neighborhood in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Starting his career writing for slick magazines, after some success, he would turn to pulp magazines and comic books. He was paid twelve dollars apiece for a block of copy and could do as many as fifty blocks of copy a day. During World War II, Spillane trained pilots and flew combat missions for the Air Corps.

After the war, Spillane returned to comic books. He also worked as a trampoline performer with the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus. He had a short stint as a federal agent during which he helped smash a narcotics ring (he still carries the scars of two bullets and a knife wound to prove it). He was converted to Jehovah's Witnesses in 1952.

Spillane's Works
For a time Spillane was one of the most popular authors in the United States, with seven titles among the ten best-selling American books of the 20th century. His first detective novel was I, the Jury in 1947. He wrote the book in a tent while he built his first house. I, the Jury introduced Spillane's tough detective Mike Hammer. The violence was more overt than it had ever been in a detective story. His books, although considered tame by current standards, had more than their contemporary competitors in terms of sexual episodes.

In 1965, he married his second wife, Sherri Malinou, a model who posed in the nude for the cover of his 1972 book The Erection Set.

Mickey Spillane is the most translated living author in the world today.

Criticism of Spillane's work
Literary critics hated Spillane's writing, citing high content of sex and violence. (Ayn Rand, who highly praised Spillane's books, was virtually the only exception to this consensus.) In answer to his critics, Spillane had a few terse comments:

Those big-shot writers could never dig the fact that there are more salted peanuts consumed than caviar.
If the public likes you, you're good.
--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mickey_Spillane [Jul 2005]

see also: pulp - 1963 - crime fiction - paperback - film

2005, Jul 19; 18:19 ::: Pulp Culture: Hardboiled Fiction and the Cold War (1995) - Woody Haut

Pulp Culture: Hardboiled Fiction and the Cold War (1995) - Woody Haut [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

First sentence: "It is no coincidence that Dashiell Hammett's Red Harvest was first published on the eve of the Wall Street Crash..."

From Kirkus Reviews
Forget the snappy but misleading title: Haut focuses on the paperback originals that took the place of pulp magazines in the period from 1945 to 1963. Contending that hardboiled fiction has rarely been taken seriously by literary criticism ``precisely because it is a class-based literature,'' Haut wants to establish the newly fashionable political credentials of hardboiled writers who, considering American society to be inherently criminal, focus on ``capitalism's relationship to crime, corruption, desire and power.'' Hence the darkness of noir fiction echoes the dark underside of the fractured American '50s. Haut, an American journalist living in London, is not especially original about Raymond Chandler, Chester Himes, Ross Macdonald, Jim Thompson, or Mickey Spillane, all of whom have been put through these paces before. He's much more revealing when he discusses more neglected writers like Leigh Brackett, Dolores Hitchens, and Dorothy B. Hughes (all of whom managed to create complex heroines ``within a culture intent on rendering them powerless''); William McGivern, Gil Brewer, and Lionel White (whose underworld novels mask critiques of the dominant social order); Charles Williams and Charles Willeford (whose later novels subvert the false optimism of the emerging '60s, when pulp fiction would be overtaken by the real-life nightmare of current events). Even here, however, Haut too often strains to pair key novels with irrelevant historical events (McGivern's Odds Against Tomorrow appeared the same year Sputnik was launched) and presses extended plot summaries into service to support historical generalizations as wordy and dubious as anything in the academic criticism he lambastes. Surprisingly, Haut makes a sounder case for pulp fiction's political analysis of American culture than for its central importance to that culture. -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. , via Amazon.com

'I killed more people tonight than I have fingers on my hands. I shot them in cold blood and enjoyed every minute of it... They were Commies... Red sons of bitches who should have died long ago.' Such sentiments as these from Mickey Spillane's character Mike Hammer seem at first sight to perfectly convey the right wing mood of McCarthyite America. In many ways American 1950s pulp fiction, with its concentration on the crime fighting detective as hero, and its casting of strong independent women as double dealing and dangerous to know, seems to encapsulate the worst of the conservatism that swept across the postwar US.

This well researched and highly readable study suggests that this is only one side of the picture. Haut argues that the work of the best writers in the genre, and their attendant popularity, reveals much more about the general unease felt by many Americans about where their country was going. On the one hand, there was the general increase in living standards, coupled with the expansion of the consumer society. American workers at the time though could be forgiven for thinking there was a catch; there was. It was the same period that saw the founding of the CIA, the atom bomb tests, the House UnAmerican Activities Committee, US intervention in Guatemala, Lebanon and Korea, and the anti-union Taft Hartley Act.

Citing the work of ex-Communists and liberals such as Jim Thompson, Chester Himes and David Goodis, and right wingers like Spillane, Haut makes the case that the collection of characters inhabiting the pulp world was largely formed by a society riven and driven by paranoia, be it the valid paranoia of blacks and the left or the insane paranoia of the witch hunters. In fact, despite Spillane's fevered ramblings, paperback books themselves were soon to become a target for the right. In 1952 a Select Committee reported that pocket books 'have degenerated into media for the dissemination of artful appeals to sensuality, immorality, filth, perversion and degeneracy'.

Other sections of the book examine the politics of private detection, the crime novel as social critique and the hitherto neglected women pulp writers such as Leigh Bracket (who went on to write film scripts for Howard Hawks' The Big Sleep and Robert Altman's The Long Goodbye), and Dolores Hitchens.

The strength of the book is that the writer does locate his subject in a historical, political and cultural context. Informed by what appears to be an American far left background (his sources include Harry Braverman, Ernest Mandel and Mike Davis), he navigates well the tricky area of the 'literary' status of these 'jobbing writers'. These writers were paid by the word for producing formula work which demanded requisite amounts of sex and violence, in what was effectively industrialised literary production.

Aware of these constraints, he argues convincingly that the best were still able to display real insight into the times about which they wrote. In addition he argues importantly that pulp fiction themes owe a debt to an earlier 'hard boiled' proletarian literary tradition that explored the experiences of those either marginal or hostile to US society. On the downside, the book is really an accompaniment to the novels under discussion and becomes somewhat hard going without a knowledge of the texts themselves.

What also might have been useful would have been a discussion of the artwork of the book covers. This though is a minor quibble about what remains a useful Marxist inspired contribution to, debates on popular culture. --Eamonn Kelly via http://pubs.socialistreviewindex.org.uk/sr194/books.htm [Jul 2005]

see also: pulp - 1950s - crime fiction - paperback - noir

2005, Jul 19; 18:19 ::: Themed galleries

  • music gallery
  • art gallery
  • film gallery
  • horror gallery
  • erotica gallery
  • fiction gallery
  • groovy at amazon.com gallery

    2005, Jul 19; 17:22 ::: Maledicta

    Maledicta (ISSN US 0363-3659) is a scholarly journal dedicated to the study of offensive and negatively-valued words and expressions. Its main areas of interest are the origin, etymology, meaning, use, and influence of vulgar, obscene, aggressive, abusive, and blasphemous language. It has been published since 1977. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maledicta [Jul 2005]

    see also: terms of abuse - vulgar - obscene - blasphemy

    2005, Jul 19; 15:30 ::: Hitchcock presents

    Alfred Hitchock's Spellbinders in Suspense (1967), unidentified edition

    Edited by Alfred Hitchcock, with Robert Arthur. Thirteen Stories of Mystery and Excitement selected by the Master of Suspense. Illustrated by Harold Isen. Random House New York. @ 1967. 206 pages. A word from our sponsor; "These are mystery-suspense stories. Some will keep you on the edge of your chair with excitement. Others are calculated to draw you along irresistibly to see how the puzzle works out. I have even included a sample or two of stories that are humorous, to show you that humor and mystery can also add up to suspense. So here you are, with best wishes for hours of good reading." Featured Spellbinders include "The Chinese Puzzle Box" by Agatha Christie, "The Most Dangerous Game" by Richard Connell, "The Birds" by Daphne du Maurier, "Puzzle For Poppy" by Patrick Quentin, "Eyewitness" by Robert Arthur, "Man From The South" by Roald Dahl, "Black Magic" by Sax Rohmer, "Treasure Trove" by F. Tennyson Jesse, "Yours Truly, Jack The Ripper" by Robert Bloch, "The Treasure Hunt" by Edgar Wallace, "The Man Who Knew How" by Dorothy L. Sayers, "The Dilemma of Grampa DuBois" by Clayre and Michel Lipman, "P. Moran, Diamond-Hunter" by Percival Wilde. --http://www.alfredsplace.com/children.htm [Jul 2005]

    At the height of Hitchcock's success, he was also asked to introduce a set of books with his name attached. The series was a collection of short stories by popular short story writers. They were primarily focused on suspense and thrillers. These titles included Alfred Hitchcock's Monster Museum, Alfred Hithcock's Supernatural Tales of Terror and Suspense, Alfred Hitchock's Spellbinders in Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock's Witch's Brew, Alfred Hitchcock's Ghostly Gallery and Alfred Hitchcock's Haunted Houseful.

    Some notable writers whose works were used in the collection include Shirley Jackson (Strangers in Town, The Lottery), T.H. White (The Sword in the Stone), Robert Bloch, H.G. Wells (The War of the Worlds), Robert Louis Stevenson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Mark Twain and the creator of The Three Investigators, Robert Arthur. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Hitchcock#Other_notes [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1967 - anthology - Alfred Hitchcock - Edgar Wallace - thriller

    2005, Jul 19; 15:30 ::: Krimi

    Der Krimi (Kriminalroman oder Kriminalfilm) ist eine Gattung der Literatur und der Filmkunst.

    Ein Krimi beschreibt ein Verbrechen und seine Verfolgung und Aufklärung durch die Staatsgewalt oder eine Privatperson. Der Kriminalroman teilt sich in zwei verschiedene Subgattungen auf, die Detektivgeschichte und den Thriller. --http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krimi [Jul 2005]

    see also: crime fiction - Germany - detective - thriller

    2005, Jul 19; 15:26 ::: The House with Laughing Windows (1976) - Pupi Avati

    The House with Laughing Windows (1976) - Pupi Avati [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

    A remote Italian village harbors unspeakable secrets, as young Stefano ("The Garden of the Finzi-Continis'" Lino Capolicchio) discovers when he arrives to restore a local church's decaying, painted fresco depicting the slaughter of St. Sebastian. Townspeople whisper that the original artist painted directly from real life, with models tortured and murdered all in the name of art. Suddenly a new, terrifying chain of murders begins, and Stefano finds himself caught in a chilling web of madness and unspeakable horror from which he may never escape! This exquisite masterpiece of Italian horror seethes with menacing atmosphere and diabolical plot twists guaranteed to haunt your dreams. Never before released in America, "The House with Laughing Windows" (La casa dalle finestre che ridono) is the crowning achievement of internationally hailed director Pupi Avati (The Story of Boys and Girls, Zeder) and has been restored to its full gothic glory from the original camera negative. --via Amazon.com

    see also: 1976 - giallo - Italian Cinema

    2005, Jul 19; 15:13 ::: Blood and Black Lace (1964) - Mario Bava

    Blood and Black Lace (1964) - Mario Bava [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

    Though the original Italian title translates to "Six Women for an Assassin," the American title, Blood and Black Lace, is far more evocative of the psychosexual nature of this elegant slasher picture. The thin plot concerns a respected Italian fashion house, a murdered model, cocaine, and a tell-all diary that seems to implicate just about everyone connected with the house of style. The disappearance of the diary initiates a wholesale slaughter of the remaining models. Mario Bava's stylish exercise in mayhem lovingly delivers every elaborate killing with dreamy assurance. As the stalker, a faceless figure wrapped up in a trench coat, makes a move for his next gorgeous victim, Bava's prowling camera snakes through sets, rushes down hallways, and generally takes off like a low-budget Hitchcock flick on speed. By contrast, Bava runs through the police investigations with a perfunctory air--the lifeless scenes, which aren't helped by the flat English dubbing, feel like he's marking time between the murders--and when the identity of the black-clad killer is revealed it almost seems beside the point. As the narrative melts into a near abstract display of choreography and color (with an often troubling misogynist edge), exposition and psychological explanations seem oddly out of place in this elaborate dance of death. As a traditional thriller it lacks any genuine thrill, but as a piece of cinematic spectacle it has moments of dreamy, disconnected beauty. --Sean Axmaker for Amazon.com

    Isabella (played by Francesca Ungaro), a young model is murdered by a mysterious masked figure at a boarding house run by Max Marian (played by Cameron Mitchell)and his lover Countess Cristiana Como (played by Eva Bartok). When Isabella's boyfriend is suspected of the killing, her diary, which apparently has some incriminating evidence linking her to the killer, dissapears, the masked killer begins killing off all the models in and around the house to find the diary. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_and_Black_Lace [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1964 - giallo - Mario Bava - Italian Cinema

    2005, Jul 19; 12:47 ::: Raymond Queneau

    Il traduit, sous le nom de Jean Raymond, le Mystère du train d'or d'Edgar Wallace. --http://www.alalettre.com/queneau-bio.htm [Jul 2005]

    2005, Jul 19; 12:47 ::: Strand Magazine

    The Strand Magazine was a monthly fiction magazine founded by George Newnes. It was published in the United Kingdom from 1890 to March, 1950. The Sherlock Holmes short stories by Arthur Conan Doyle were first published in The Strand. Other contributors included Grant Allen, Margery Allingham, E.C. Bentley, Agatha Christie, E. Nesbit, W.W. Jacobs, Rudyard Kipling, Dorothy L. Sayers, Georges Simenon, Edgar Wallace, P. G. Wodehouse, and even Winston Churchill. Once a sketch drawn by Queen Victoria of one of her children appeared with her permision.

    A new quarterly version focusing on Mystery of The Strand first appeared in December, 1998 and is still published as of as of 2004. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strand_Magazine [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1890 - fiction - crime fiction - magazine

    2005, Jul 19; 11:47 ::: The Devil Came from Akasava (1971) - Jesus Franco

    The Devil Came from Akasava (1971) - Jesus Franco [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

    From the Back Cover
    Brace yourself for an exotic trip into terror and adventure with this groovy slice of decadent '70s drive-in delights from cult director Jess Franco (Venus in Furs, Succubus). Something's amiss in the forbidding land of Akasava, where Scotland Yard sends strapping Rex Forrester (Juliet of the Spirits' Fred Williams) to investigate a renowned professor's disappearance while searching for a miraculous but lethal stone. Along with luscious Jane Morgan (Vampyros Lesbos' Soledad Miranda), Rex uncovers a perilous den of murder, deceit, lust and magic that could claim his life! Sporting a catchy and oh-so-funky music score and macabre, cliffhanging action, this slinky and stylish Eurocult gem is a devilish offer you won't be able to refuse! --via Amazon.com

    see also: 1971 - Edgar Wallace - Jess Franco - film - Soledad Miranda

    2005, Jul 19; 10:18 ::: Edgar-Wallace-Filme

    Edgar-Wallace-Filme sind Spielfilme, die auf Werken des britischen Schriftstellers Edgar Wallace (1875 - 1932) basieren.

    Obwohl es im In- und Ausland unzählige Verfilmungen von Stoffen nach Edgar Wallace gibt, werden heute vor allem die Kriminalfilme der zwischen 1959 und 1972 entstandenen Wallace-Serie der deutschen Produktionsfirma Rialto Film als Edgar-Wallace-Filme bezeichnet. Aber auch die deutschen Filmproduzenten Artur Brauner und Kurt Ulrich sowie der britische Filmproduzent Harry Allan Towers brachten einige Edgar-Wallace-Verfilmungen in deutsche Kinos. --http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edgar-Wallace-Filme [Jul 2005]

    A large number of movies have been based on Edgar Wallace's novels. The Green Archer was a well-regarded serial in the days of silent cinema, and post-war there were a string of B-movies made in both Britain and Germany. These later became a staple of late-night television. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edgar_Wallace [Jul 2005]

    Tim Bergfelder's contribution, 'Extraterritorial Fantasies: Edgar Wallace and the German Crime Film', looks at the fin-de-siecle British crime novelist's impact on German cultural production. Wallace's books were adapted for the German screen during the 1920s, and resurfaced in the 1960s to become the bread and butter of the German film industry. Bergfelder points out that while Wallace seemed to represent the quintessence of British ambience, there was really not that much specifically British about the novels, which rendered them ideal for cultural appropriation in Germany and the United States. Bergfelder traces the manner in which Wallace's work was variously shaped and readapted in various eras of German history. During the Weimar era, Wallace's work fitted right in among the crime films preoccupied with serial killers, such as in G. W. Pabst's rendition of John Gay's _Beggar's Opera_ (1928), Fritz Lang's _M_ (1931), or Robert Weine's _Das Cabinet des Dr Caligari_ (1920). Under the Nazi takeover, the crime genre fell into decline as they put many Jewish artists, managers, and publishers out of business, and furthermore regarded the crime genre as a corrupting influence on the public readership. During the 1950s the appreciation for Wallace's British ambience came to be regarded as indicative of Germany's normal status vis-a-vis other nations. Many Wallace adaptations during the 1960s -- internecine feuds about inheritances shot in the labyrinthine settings of country mansions harboring subterranean hideouts and trapdoors -- were among the top-grossing films in Germany during that era. These adaptations -- peopled with stereotypes about the class system, Dickensian characters, dotty old ladies, and subversive butlers -- were a form of distraction or escape. Bergfelder summates the appeal of these films among West Germans as a form of progressive nostalgia, because the historical reference point for these films was a period untainted by the fascist past, yet the pleasures gained from the consumption of these narratives were intended to be a substitute for a sense of national identity repressed by realpolitik of the contemporary era. --Angelica Fenner, 'German Cinema History as Rhizome: _The German Cinema Book_', _Film-Philosophy_, vol. 8 no. 7, February 2004, http://www.film-philosophy.com/vol8-2004/n7fenner [Jul 2005]

    Companies churning out serials—Edgar Wallace thrillers, Karl May Westerns and Heinz Erhardt comedies—dominated the postwar German film industry. Brauner’s enterprise was one of them, and in some respects his Mabuse films are comparable to the popular Edgar Wallace series. Both abound with formulaic horror and suspense, and teem with master-criminals possessed of secret identities and ruthless organizations. Die tausend Augen already bore a certain resemblance to the Wallace films, [...] --Sven Lütticken, http://www.newleftreview.net/NLR25904.shtml [Jul 2005]

    Artcritic and - historian Sven Lütticken (1971 - ) studied art history at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam and the Freie Universität, Berlin. In 2004, he was granted the Price for the Art Criticism of the BKVB fund, Amsterdam. Lütticken teaches at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam and is editor for De Witte Raaf. He publishes regularly in (inter)national art magazines such as Jong Holland, Artforum, New Left Review, Afterimage, Texte zur Kunst, Camera Austria, and contributes to catalogues and exhibitions as writer or guest curator. --http://www.wdw.nl/participant.php?part_id=222&id=36 [Jul 2005]

    Edgar Wallace (1875-1932) was one of the most popular authors of the 20th Century. He wrote a prodigious amount of criminal thrillers, written at a rapid pace (some started and finished in just a weekend!). Understandably, film producers took an early interest in his novels, and Wallace himself, fascinated by the new medium, became a director and screenwriter.

    As an author of international repute, his books were popular in Germany in the 1920s onward, though banned during the Nazi years. Germany had already begun filming Wallace titles in 1927, but the Nazi era stopped any further production of such films. In 1959, inspired by the British Wallace film THE RINGER (1952), Preben Philipsen A/S and Rialto Film began making their first Edgar Wallace film, DER FROSCH MIT DER MASKE, based on Wallace's THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE FROG (1925). The German Edgar Wallace "krimi" was born. (A criminal or mystery thriller is called "krimi" in Germany.) Soon a familiar cadre of actors was inhabiting the Wallace krimi world: Joachim Fuchsberger, Heinz Drache, Siegfried Schurenberg, Siegfried Lowitz, Eddi Arent (providing comic relief), and that lovable maniac Klaus Kinski, best known to American audiences for his many films outside of the krimi genre. The jazzy, innovative music, provided by such composers as Martin Bottcher and Peter Thomas, added a contemporary hipness to stylish updates of stories decades old. It is these series of Rialto films, and a couple of other films made at the same time but from different producers, that represent "The German Edgar Wallace Films," and not any productions made in the 1920s or after the early 1970s.

    Because of their national and international popularity, the Wallace krimis had many imitations, some involving Wallace's son, Bryan Edgar Wallace. In articles, online sites, discussions, and video catalogs, the Bryan Edgar Wallace krimis are frequently mistaken for films based on his father's work.

    There was a substantial quotient of chilling and gruesome elements in many of these krimis, and it's not surprising that several were promoted in other countries as horror films, a sales pitch likewise used in the distribution of the Dr. Mabuse films, which shared stylistic elements and certain filmmaking talent with the Wallace thrillers. By the 1970s, the Wallace films began to merge with Italian thrillers (gialli), which clearly sought inspiration from their earlier German counterparts. Soon thereafter, the German Wallaces disappeared, done in, partially, by the competitive high production rate and unrepentant exploitation of the Italian filmmaking business.

    Almost all of the German Wallace films were made available in English-dubbed versions for American audiences. Though a few saw theatrical exhibition, most were first seen on American television in the late 1960s and early 1970s, pruned of any nudity and a few distinctive elements, such as the typical introductory credit sequence of gunshots and a voiceover announcing, "Hallo, hier spricht Edgar Wallace! (Hello, this is Edgar Wallace speaking!)" Subsequently, public domain video companies released these edited films on video, sourced from 16mm elements, which did not do the films justice, but which at least kept a watchful flame burning for these important films. Germany has already released a fine video series of these films, and is beginning a superior DVD presentation. Unfortunately, all these have been presented without English-subtitles and, of course, in the European PAL format. Fortunately, American DVD releases of a few of these Wallace krimis loom in the distance, either as announced projects or speculation.

    In the filmography below, films not part of the Rialto series, but in most cases no less important, are indicated by an asterisk following their German title. --M.L. via http://www.latarnia.com/krimi.htm [Jul 2005]

    see also: Edgar Wallace - Weimar - German cinema - film - Klaus Kinski

    2005, Jul 19; 10:18 ::: Giallo

    Returning now to the gialli, it should be becoming apparent the 'Italian thriller' label is equally unsatisfactory. The initial problem is that we are really discussing two things; giallo as a literary form and as later, cinematic form.

    The term itself is Italian for yellow, with similar etymological roots to its French cousin noir: Whereas in France hard-boiled detective novels were first published under the imprint of the Série Noire in black covers, so in Italy suspense and detective novels - and note here the multiplication of terms of reference: mystery, thriller, hard-boiled, detective and suspense, not all of which may be found in any individual text - were published in distinctive yellow covers by Mondadori, beginning in 1929.

    Compounding the confusion here is an alternative suggestion that the term may also refer to the low-quality paper used, thereby raising questions as to the relationship between giallo and the overlapping category of the 'pulp'.

    The giallo film, however, did not really emerge until the 1960s with the aforementioned The Girl Who Knew Too Much/The Evil Eye and Blood and Black Lace/Six Women for the Murderer (Mario Bava, 1964).

    Here the picture is further complicated by the entry of a third strand of crime literature and cinema in the form of the German krimi translations of works by the British crime thriller author Edgar Wallace (1875-1932) - works that can be situated more firmly within the pulp tradition. Though enormously popular in Weimar Germany there were only a couple of official adaptations of Wallace's work prior to the rise of the Nazis - who predictably deemed such material decadent and un-German - though it could be argued that the world of Lang's Dr Mabuse the Gambler (1923), Spies (1928) and The Testament of Dr Mabuse (1932) is not that distant. --http://www.darkdreams.org/dissertation/introduction.html [Jul 2005]

    see also: giallo - série noire

    2005, Jul 19; 10:18 ::: Psychothriller

    One was a form that remained marginal until recent years, focusing on mentalities, criminal and/or victim. Quite a number of the early stories took the criminal's viewpoint, and were effectively psychothrillers where the interest was more why something happened than who did it, unroofing the brain rather than the house. Lytton's Paul Clifford (1828) is like this, and the dark psychology of Bill Sykes, Fagin and even Nancy is the strongest element in Dickens' Oliver Twist. This pattern lies behind a number of Poe's stories as well, such as 'The Black Cat', 'William Wilson' or 'The Fall of the House of Usher' (all 1839), and this move into the psyche of criminal and/or victim was both stimulating as a form of Gothic horror and was also a good way of avoiding the sheer difficulty of organising a plot to expose who the criminal really was: the mode has thrived in recent decades from the ironic semi-confessions of Patricia Highsmith's Ripley to the dark, even sado-masochistic, revelatory narratives of Thomas Harris. --http://www3.unibo.it/cotepra/bologna.html [Jul 2005]

    see also: thriller - fiction - psycho

    2005, Jul 19; 10:02 ::: Thriller fiction

    Thriller fiction, sometimes called suspense fiction, is a genre of literature that typically entails fast-paced plots, numerous action scenes, and limited character development. It is sometimes called suspense fiction because of the heightened level of stress or excitement that it induces in the reader. Along with the aforementioned suspense fiction, it has several sub-genres, including adventure fiction, techno-thriller, conspiracy thriller and spy fiction.

    Thriller fiction has its origins in the adventure stories of Edgar Allen Poe and Robert Louis Stevenson. In the early twentieth century, many more adventure stories saw their way into print in the dime novels and pulp magazines of that era.

    The thriller novel as we know it today was virtually invented by the author Edgar Wallace. Writing in the late 1920s and early 1930s, Wallace produced many of these quickly paced novels until his death in 1932. After Wallace's death, imitators and pulp magazines continued the trend.

    In the 1950s, the invention of the spy thriller by Ian Fleming, contributed to the genre. Also in that decade, the arrival of the author Alistair MacLean helped to raise the level of popularity of the genre. MacLean's exciting and action packed novels were appealing to readers of the genre.

    In the 1970s, Robert Ludlum began to write thiller novels in the modern style as we know it today. His action heavy novels were best sellers, though derided by critics for their lack of in depth characters and limited psychological subtext. Many of his novels were also conspiracy thrillers.

    Many popular authors of thriller fiction today include Clive Cussler, James Patterson, John Sandford, and Robin Cook. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thriller_fiction [Jul 2005]

    see also: thriller - fiction - crime fiction

    2005, Jul 19; 09:53 ::: Eugène Sue and crime fiction

    But in the nineteenth century the power of the rudimentary psychothriller was its extension of the Gothic into the domain of crime: the huge success of the Gothic novel among readers derived from a quest for sensory excitements beyond polite taste and also a covert recognition of the dark powers of the human mind and body - distinctly romantic and usually rural versions of the frightening anomie of the new urban experience. One powerful explanation of crime fiction is that it domesticated Gothic, and the enormous successes of cityramas like Eugène Sue's Mystères de Paris (1844) and G.M.W. Reynold's spin-off, or plagiarism, the highly sensational Mysteries of London (1846-50) are paradigms of such an achievement, but it is also a central feature of the major works of Wilkie Collins and of Charles' Dickens's London sagas like Bleak House (1852-3) and Our Mutual Friend (1864-5). --http://www3.unibo.it/cotepra/bologna.html [Jul 2005]

    see also: city - Eugène Sue - crime fiction

    2005, Jul 19; 09:19 ::: Noir fiction

    A U.S. reaction to the cosy conventionality of British murder mysteries was the American hard-boiled school of crime writing, sometimes also referred to as noir fiction. Writers like Dashiell Hammett (1894 - 1961), Raymond Chandler (1888 - 1959), Jonathan Latimer (1906 - 1983), Mickey Spillane (born 1918), and many others decided on an altogether different, innovative approach to crime fiction. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_crime_fiction#Hard_boiled_American_crime_fiction_writing [Jul 2005]

    see also: noir - crime fiction

    2005, Jul 19; 09:19 ::: Twenty rules for writing detective stories (1928) - S.S. Van Dine

    via http://gaslight.mtroyal.ca/vandine.htm [Jul 2005]

    (Originally published in the American Magazine (1928-sep),
    and included in the Philo Vance investigates omnibus (1936).

    by S.S. Van Dine
    (pseud. for Willard Huntington Wright)

    THE DETECTIVE story is a kind of intellectual game. It is more — it is a sporting event. And for the writing of detective stories there are very definite laws — unwritten, perhaps, but none the less binding; and every respectable and self-respecting concocter of literary mysteries lives up to them. Herewith, then, is a sort Credo, based partly on the practice of all the great writers of detective stories, and partly on the promptings of the honest author's inner conscience. To wit:

       1. The reader must have equal opportunity with the detective for solving the mystery. All clues must be plainly stated and described.

       2. No willful tricks or deceptions may be placed on the reader other than those played legitimately by the criminal on the detective himself.

       3. There must be no love interest. The business in hand is to bring a criminal to the bar of justice, not to bring a lovelorn couple to the hymeneal altar.

       4. The detective himself, or one of the official investigators, should never turn out to be the culprit. This is bald trickery, on a par with offering some one a bright penny for a five-dollar gold piece. It's false pretenses.

       5. The culprit must be determined by logical deductions — not by accident or coincidence or unmotivated confession. To solve a criminal problem in this latter fashion is like sending the reader on a deliberate wild-goose chase, and then telling him, after he has failed, that you had the object of his search up your sleeve all the time. Such an author is no better than a practical joker.

       6. The detective novel must have a detective in it; and a detective is not a detective unless he detects. His function is to gather clues that will eventually lead to the person who did the dirty work in the first chapter; and if the detective does not reach his conclusions through an analysis of those clues, he has no more solved his problem than the schoolboy who gets his answer out of the back of the arithmetic.

       7. There simply must be a corpse in a detective novel, and the deader the corpse the better. No lesser crime than murder will suffice. Three hundred pages is far too much pother for a crime other than murder. After all, the reader's trouble and expenditure of energy must be rewarded.

       8. The problem of the crime must he solved by strictly naturalistic means. Such methods for learning the truth as slate-writing, ouija-boards, mind-reading, spiritualistic se'ances, crystal-gazing, and the like, are taboo. A reader has a chance when matching his wits with a rationalistic detective, but if he must compete with the world of spirits and go chasing about the fourth dimension of metaphysics, he is defeated ab initio.

       9. There must be but one detective — that is, but one protagonist of deduction — one deus ex machina. To bring the minds of three or four, or sometimes a gang of detectives to bear on a problem, is not only to disperse the interest and break the direct thread of logic, but to take an unfair advantage of the reader. If there is more than one detective the reader doesn't know who his codeductor is. It's like making the reader run a race with a relay team.

       10. The culprit must turn out to be a person who has played a more or less prominent part in the story — that is, a person with whom the reader is familiar and in whom he takes an interest.

       11. A servant must not be chosen by the author as the culprit. This is begging a noble question. It is a too easy solution. The culprit must be a decidedly worth-while person — one that wouldn't ordinarily come under suspicion.

       12. There must be but one culprit, no matter how many murders are committed. The culprit may, of course, have a minor helper or co-plotter; but the entire onus must rest on one pair of shoulders: the entire indignation of the reader must be permitted to concentrate on a single black nature.

       13. Secret societies, camorras, mafias, et al., have no place in a detective story. A fascinating and truly beautiful murder is irremediably spoiled by any such wholesale culpability. To be sure, the murderer in a detective novel should be given a sporting chance; but it is going too far to grant him a secret society to fall back on. No high-class, self-respecting murderer would want such odds.

       14. The method of murder, and the means of detecting it, must be be rational and scientific. That is to say, pseudo-science and purely imaginative and speculative devices are not to be tolerated in the roman policier. Once an author soars into the realm of fantasy, in the Jules Verne manner, he is outside the bounds of detective fiction, cavorting in the uncharted reaches of adventure.

       15. The truth of the problem must at all times be apparent — provided the reader is shrewd enough to see it. By this I mean that if the reader, after learning the explanation for the crime, should reread the book, he would see that the solution had, in a sense, been staring him in the face-that all the clues really pointed to the culprit — and that, if he had been as clever as the detective, he could have solved the mystery himself without going on to the final chapter. That the clever reader does often thus solve the problem goes without saying.

       16. A detective novel should contain no long descriptive passages, no literary dallying with side-issues, no subtly worked-out character analyses, no "atmospheric" preoccupations. such matters have no vital place in a record of crime and deduction. They hold up the action and introduce issues irrelevant to the main purpose, which is to state a problem, analyze it, and bring it to a successful conclusion. To be sure, there must be a sufficient descriptiveness and character delineation to give the novel verisimilitude.

       17. A professional criminal must never be shouldered with the guilt of a crime in a detective story. Crimes by housebreakers and bandits are the province of the police departments — not of authors and brilliant amateur detectives. A really fascinating crime is one committed by a pillar of a church, or a spinster noted for her charities.

       18. A crime in a detective story must never turn out to be an accident or a suicide. To end an odyssey of sleuthing with such an anti-climax is to hoodwink the trusting and kind-hearted reader.

       19. The motives for all crimes in detective stories should be personal. International plottings and war politics belong in a different category of fiction — in secret-service tales, for instance. But a murder story must be kept gemütlich, so to speak. It must reflect the reader's everyday experiences, and give him a certain outlet for his own repressed desires and emotions.

       20. And (to give my Credo an even score of items) I herewith list a few of the devices which no self-respecting detective story writer will now avail himself of. They have been employed too often, and are familiar to all true lovers of literary crime. To use them is a confession of the author's ineptitude and lack of originality. (a) Determining the identity of the culprit by comparing the butt of a cigarette left at the scene of the crime with the brand smoked by a suspect. (b) The bogus spiritualistic se'ance to frighten the culprit into giving himself away. (c) Forged fingerprints. (d) The dummy-figure alibi. (e) The dog that does not bark and thereby reveals the fact that the intruder is familiar. (f)The final pinning of the crime on a twin, or a relative who looks exactly like the suspected, but innocent, person. (g) The hypodermic syringe and the knockout drops. (h) The commission of the murder in a locked room after the police have actually broken in. (i) The word association test for guilt. (j) The cipher, or code letter, which is eventually unraveled by the sleuth.


    via http://gaslight.mtroyal.ca/vandine.htm [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1928 - detective - fiction

    2005, Jul 19; 09:19 ::: First 50 titles in the Série Noire series

    Le fondateur de la Série Noire en 1945 aux éditions Gallimard, Marcel Duhamel, avertit d'entrée : "Que le lecteur non prévenu se méfie : les volumes de la Série Noire ne peuvent pas sans danger être mis entre toutes les mains. L'amateur d'énigmes à la Sherlock Holmes n'y trouvera pas souvent son compte. L'optimiste systématique non plus. L'immoralité admise en général dans ce genre d'ouvrages, uniquement pour servir de repoussoir à la moralité conventionnelle, y est chez elle tout autant que les beaux sentiments. L'esprit en est rarement conformiste. On y voit des policiers plus corrompus que les malfaiteurs qu'ils poursuivent. Le détective sympathique ne résout pas toujours le mystère. Parfois, il n'y a pas de mystère. Et quelquefois même, pas de détective du tout... Mais alors ?... Alors, il reste de l'action, de l'angoisse, de la violence, de la bagarre et du meurtre. Comme dans les bons films, les états d'âmes se traduisent par des gestes, et les lecteurs friands de littérature introspective devront se livrer à la gymnastique inverse. Il y a aussi de l'amour - sous toutes ses formes - de la passion, de la haine, tous sentiments qui, dans une société policée, ne sont censés avoir cours que tout à fait exceptionnellement, mais qui sont ici monnaie courante et sont parfois exprimés dans une langue fort peu académique mais où domine toujours, rose ou noir, l'humour. En bref, notre but est fort simple : vous empêcher de dormir. A cet effet, nous avons fait appel aux grands spécialistes du roman policier mouvementé : Burnett, James Cain, Hadley Chase, Peter Cheyney, Horace Mc Coy, Dashiell Hammett, Don Tracy, Raoul Whitfield, etc. et tous nous ont donné le meilleur de leurs œuvres pour cette louable entreprise. Il paraît deux titres par mois. A l'amateur de sensations fortes je conseille donc vivement la réconfortante lecture de ces ouvrages. En choisissant au hasard il tombera vraisemblablement sur une nuit blanche." Vous voilà donc prévenus. Prêts à vous confronter aux 50 premiers titres parus dans la collection de polars par excellence ? --http://www.chapitre.com/accueil.asp?page=/la/selections/polar/serienoire.htm&donnee_appel= [Jul 2005]

      1 Peter Cheyney La môme vert-de-gris
      2 Peter Cheyney Cet homme est dangereux
      3 James Hadley Chase Pas d'orchidées pour miss Blandish
      4 Horace Mac Coy Un linceul n'a pas de poches
      5 Donald Fiske Tracy Neiges d'antan
      6 James Hadley Chase Eva
      7 Peter Cheyney Vous pigez ?
      8 Raymond T. Chandler La dame du lac
      9 Peter Cheyney De quoi se marrer
      10 James Hadley Chase La chair de l'orchidée
      11 James Mallahan Cain Dans la peau
      12 Raymond T. Chandler Adieu, ma jolie
      13 Raymond T. Chandler Le grand sommeil
      14 Donald Fiske Tracy Tous des vendus
      15 Peter Cheyney Comment qu'elle est !
      16 Raymond Marshall Miss Shumway jette un sort
      17 W.R Burnett Le petit César
      18 Terry Stewart La mort et l'ange
      19 James Hadley Chase Douze Chinetoques et une souris
      20 Raymond Marshall En trois coups de cuiller à pot
      21 Peter Cheyney A toi de faire, ma mignonne
      22 Peter Cheyney Les femmes s'en balancent
      23 Dashiell Hammett La clé de verre
      24 Raymond Marshall Le requiem des blondes
      25 Robert Finnegan Des monstres à la pelle
      26 Jonathan Latimer Quadrille à la morgue
      27 Robert Finnegan Les spaghettis par la racine
      28 Henry Kane Un fauteuil en enfer
      29 Bill Goode Mic mac maison
      30 Kenneth Millar A feu et à sang
      31 James Hadley Chase Garces de femmes !
      32 Virgil Scott Jusqu'à la gauche
      33 William Stuart Passage à tabac
      34 D.H Clarke Un nommé Louis Beretti
      35 James Hadley Chase Le corbillard de madame
      36 Paul Cain A tombeau ouvert
      37 Stanley Ellin La peur au ventre
      38 Samuel Wooley Taylor Comme un frère
      39 Horace Mac Coy Adieu la vie, adieu l'amour
      40 Jonathan Latimer Les morts s'en foutent
      41 James Hadley Chase Méfiez-vous, fillettes !
      42 Jonathan Latimer La corrida chez le prophète
      43 James Hadley Chase Tu seras tout seul dans ton cercueil
      44 Geoffrey Homes Pendez-moi haut et court
      45 Raymond T. Chandler La grande fenêtre
      46 Raoul Whitfield Vivement mes pantoufles
      47 Harold Q. Masur Les pieds devant
      48 Richard Sale Lazare n°7
      49 Richard Ellington Vide ton sac
      50 James Edward Gunn Tendre femelle
    --http://www.chapitre.com/accueil.asp?page=/la/selections/polar/serienoire.htm&donnee_appel= [Jul 2005]

    see also: Série Noire - fiction

    2005, Jul 19; 07:18 ::: Don't Look Now (1973) - Nicolas Roeg

    Don't Look Now (1973) - Nicolas Roeg [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

    Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now once seemed radically new with its kaleidoscopic imagery, dreamlike editing, and willingness to let mystery be mysterious on several levels of reality/illusion--plus art-house darling Julie Christie in a long, nude love scene! Nowadays, this 1974 adaptation of a Daphne du Maurier ghost story looks almost classical. Following the drowning of their child in England, Laura (Christie) and John Baxter (Donald Sutherland) have come to dank, eternally dying Venice, where he is supervising the restoration of a moldering church and she is either slipping into or climbing out of madness with the help of a pair of creepy spinster sisters, one of whom can "see" even though blind. John may share this psychic power, though he resists accepting it as the canals fill with murder victims, surface realities turn shimmery as water, and a red-coated figure--the daughter's ghost?--keeps flickering in the corner of our vision. Though surreal and perplexing, the film does eventually add up, and the ending remains a real throat-grabber. --Richard T. Jameson for amazon.com

    Don't Look Now is a British film about a couple whose daughter tragically drowns while playing at their English home. While grieving in Venice, they are befriended by strange sisters who say that they are in contact with their daughter from beyond the grave. Drawn to the sisters, they are led into a vortex of time and coincidences, of recurring themes and motifs (light on water, breaking glass, the colour red), which reaches a dramatic conclusion on the water's edge.

    Sex Scene
    Don't Look Now has become somewhat well-known for possibly including a real sexual act, rather than the simulated sex typically found in mainstream (i.e. non-pornographic) movies. What is known for certain is that the scene (which appears approximately 30 minutes into the film) was included spontaneously and did not appear in the screenplay. Director Roeg used the scene of the main characters played by Christie and Sutherland making love to counterbalance the scenes of them arguing. The scene in question was severely trimmed in the original American theatrical release to receive an MPAA R rating. The scene is edited in an atypical fashion, with the footage of the act intercut with footage of the couple getting dressed to leave. Director Steven Soderbergh paid homage to the scene by including a tamer love scene shot in similar style in his 1998 Elmore Leonard adaption Out of Sight. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don%27t_Look_Now [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1973 - Nicolas Roeg

    2005, Jul 18; 19:42 ::: Julie Christie

    The darling of British cinema as captured by the celebrity photographer Terence Donovan in 1962
    image sourced here.

    see also: actress - model

    2005, Jul 18; 19:07 ::: Addicted to love

    Addicted to love - Robert Palmer

    Palmer recorded the album Riptide (1985), which featured the Number 1 single "Addicted to Love". The single was accompanied by a memorable and much parodied music video, directed by Terence Donovan, in which Palmer is surrounded by a bevy of near-identically clad, heavily made-up female "musicians". --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Palmer_(British_singer)#1985-1995:_Power_Station_and_MTV_success [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1985 - legs

    2005, Jul 18; 19:07 ::: Amanda Lear (1946 - )

    Amanda Lear, photocredit unidentified

    Amanda Lear (born November 18, 1946 in Hong Kong, of a French father and Chinese mother) is a singer and was a disco queen in the 1970s. She was engaged to the lead singer of Roxy Music, Bryan Ferry. She was also the model on the cover of the Roxy Music album For Your Pleasure.

    During the 1960s painter Salvador Dali was her companion and although she was Dali's protege she also became David Bowie's lover. In 1979, she married the aristocrat Alain-Philippe Malagnac d'Argens de Villele, French writer Roger Peyrefitte's lover and adoptive son. Malagnac, aged 51, perished in a fire in the couple's home in Saint-Etienne-du-Grès near Avignon on December 17, 2000.

    Nowadays she resides in Southern France. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amanda_Lear [Jul 2005]

    see also: disco

    2005, Jul 18; 19:07 ::: Hergé

    "Vol 714 pour Sydney", page 59 by Hergé

    Georges Remi (May 23, 1907 - March 3, 1983), better known by the pen name Hergé, was a Belgian comics writer and artist. "Hergé" is the French pronunciation of "R.G.", the reverse of his initials. His best-known and most substantial work is The Adventures of Tintin, which he wrote and illustrated from 1929 until his death in 1983, which left the twenty-fourth Tintin adventure, Tintin and Alph-art, unfinished. His work remains a strong influence on comics, particularly in Europe.

    The notable qualities of the Tintin stories include their vivid humanism, a realistic feel produced by meticulous and wide-ranging research, and Hergé's ligne claire drawing style.

    Other series that Hergé wrote and drew include Jo, Zette and Jocko and Quick & Flupke (Quick et Flupke). --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herg%C3%A9 [Jul 2005]

    see also: Belgium - comics

    2005, Jul 18; 18:14 ::: Miffy

    Miffy by Dick Bruna
    image sourced here. [Jul 2005]

    Miffy is a cartoon character in the form of a small girl rabbit drawn by Dick Bruna. Her original Dutch name is Nijntje (pr. nein-che) which stems from a toddler's pronunciation of the word "konijntje" meaning "little rabbit".

    She was created in 1955, after Dick Bruna had been telling his one-year-old son Sierk stories about a little rabbit they had seen earlier in the dunes, while on holiday.

    The first Miffy book was called 'Miffy at the Seaside'.

    Miffy is drawn in a very minimalist style, requiring only a few lines and one or two primary colours. In a sense, it reminds one of Hergé's ligne claire.

    The Miffy books contain sixteen pages of story. Each page has one illustration and four lines of verse.

    The books are printed in small format. Dick Bruna feels it important that his audience feels that his books are there for them, not for their parents.

    Miffy has been shown on TV since 2003.

    Many think that Miffy is Japanese because the line style is also used in Hello Kitty and her friends. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miffy [Jul 2005]

    see also: 1955 - comics

    2005, Jul 18; 17:56 ::: Zwarte Beertjes

    image sourced here. [Jul 2005]

    Koichi Yanagimoto (Glyph)
    Tokyo 2004
    Stamped cloth with dust-jacket 446 pages
    More than 2000 colour illustrations
    Design: Suzuka Yanagimoto
    Text in Japanese and English

    Dick Bruna is known internationally as the creator of Miffy, the ever simply designed rabbit that has delighted children in countless countries & languages over the last thirty years. What many do not know is that during the first thirty years of his design career Dick Bruna created more than 2000 book covers for his fathers Dutch publishing company A.W.Bruna & Zoon. These exceptionally clear and simply designed covers and their mascots became not only trade-marks of the publishing company but they became so iconical that they needed no words to convey messages intended for publicity.

    This lavishly illustrated and well designed book presents for the first time a comprehensive catalogue of the book-cover designs and publicity pieces that Bruna created during his long career. --http://www.nijhoflee.nl/design/graphic/graphic.htm [Jul 2005]

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