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Episode 103 - Where the Sidewalk Ends (w/ Pat Healy)

Should "Where the Sidewalk Ends" be inducted into The Canon?  

34 members have voted

  1. 1. Should "Where the Sidewalk Ends" be inducted into The Canon?



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Actor Pat Healy joins Amy to make the case for the classic 1950 noir “Where the Sidewalk Ends.” They discuss the moral complexity of its characters and the troubled history of the production. We hear about Dana Andrews’ haunted presence, what film noir tropes work for the film, and the richness of writer Ben Hecht’s female characters before Amy and Pat make their closing arguments.

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No for me. It's fine but nothing about it strikes me as all that exceptional. I agree with Amy, it's worth watching but it's not a must-watch.

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I side with Amy as well. Solid well-made noir, but not sure how it clearly rises above the pack.

 

The clumsy ending hurts the message, and while it's not entirely fair to hold that against the movie (given the restrictions of the Hays Code at the time), there are other films from that period that managed to tap-dance around studio-imposed restrictions in more impressive fashion.

 

Good movie, not Canon.

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Yay, Pat Healy! and Jake Fogelnest next week! Cheap Thrills really is great. There's weirdly a lot of films recently with a similar dark, 'what would YOU do?'-type premise (on Netflix, for example), but Cheap Thrills is easily the best.

 

And Amy, no "La La Land sucks" reference? I was sure it'd be worked into every episode, all leading up to Devin's surprise return where he triumphantly nominates for the Canon... La La Land! Ah well.

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It was a solid movie and it was nice to have a noir that I've never heard of before added to my film experience, but it isn't Canon worthy.

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I voted no, but I really wanted to vote yes. More than once recently I've had classic film noirs recommended to me that I thought had major problems. Boringly unflappable and inconsistent characters for one thing, yet many of these films still get in the nineties on Rotten Tomatoes. At least Where The Sidewalk Ends has very clear motivations with an arc that makes sense.

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I'm on a soft yes. I'd rather listened to a discussion over Laura, which is in many ways the swifter, better-orchestrated film with just as much an arresting sense for cinematography and direction. But do I want to see future generations this small gem, eventhough it might not be the greatest film noir ever? I think so, yes. If we can have about 4 80s horror flicks, we might as well have a variety of Film Noirs in here. Anyway, I think it's just a worthy enough entry on its own to justify an inclusion into the canon.

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I'm also a soft yes. Over the last few years, I've seen probably a couple hundred film noir now, and while I'll agree, it's not one of the absolute best, it's definitely up there if I were to make a list of my favorites. It just depends on how strict I'd want to be with what gets into the canon.

 

Pat Healy asked if there's an earlier film about a cop beating people and it being an issue, and immediately thought of On Dangerous Ground, but that was 1951, one year after Where the Sidewalk Ends. So it could be the first.

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I do really love this movie, but I don't think it's Canon worthy. I always thought that the love story element was out of place. I try not to work this way when it comes to voting, but I think there are half a dozen other Otto Preminger films that I would consider first. I love the genre of a guilty man covering his tracks, but I wonder if this film would be one of the stronger ones of the genre if Preminger hadn't brought such extraordinary direction to it. But I love that Pat Healy is such a fan. It's definitely an underrated and often forgotten film. And I love that Twilight Time has done such a beautiful restoration of the film. If you're reading this, Pat, I really enjoyed TAKE ME. I like your style, sir.

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Couldn't find the movie. Therefore, I abstained from listening and voting.

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Couldn't find the movie. Therefore, I abstained from listening and voting.

it's on youtube, and available for rental on amazon

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it's on youtube, and available for rental on amazon

 

Picture quality on the YouTube version isn't great, but it is free!

 

I watched it on Amazon.

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"See here, I'm looking for Khaleesi and his boys. Tell me where to find them or I'll beat your head off!" *and scene*

 

Hadn't seen this (or even heard of it) before, so I appreciate Pat Healey's choosing it. But I agree with Amy the romance doesn't work - Dixon has more chemistry with the cafe owner than Gene Tierney. If dames weren't de rigueur, the whole subplot would almost be superfluous. I'm glad I watched it and it does feel unjustly forgotten - Preminger brings a lot to the table and the supporting cast, in particular, were the MVP's for me. A very solid noir that doesn't quite reach Canon-status.

 

Also, is the lowest # of responses for an episode? I'm assuming due to the obscurity of the selection...

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I'm so behind all the episodes :unsure:

 

This is a clumsily directed and written film- no way around it. It squanders its wonderful setup by keeping its focus away from any kind of tense plot developments. At its core, it's a accidental murder film; of which there are so many other films that have done this so much better- I'd wage even being out at the same time as this film.

 

Hard no, not because I have anything against it; it's just a casual subpar film.

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