Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Forgotten Movies: THE ASPHALT JUNGLE and a Question




1950-Directed by John Huston, based on the novel by W.R. Burnet

Although not really a forgotten movie, I just saw this one for the first time and was knocked out by it. John Huston managed to tuck a heist in the middle of a string of terrific character studies. Starring Sterling Hayden, Louis Calhern, James Whitmore, Jean Hagen, Sam Jaffe and a young Marilyn Monroe, it was full of atmosphere, great dialog, action, and character. The heist was background material more than foreground. Every character has something to hide.

What is your favorite heist movie? I love RIFIFI but there are so many great ones.

19 comments:

Jerry House said...

There are many great ones so it's very hard to choose, but TOPKAPI would be up there.

Sergio (Tipping My Fedora) said...

There are so many different types too - personally I prefer the ones like the remakes of THOMAS CROWN and OCEAN'S ELEVEN in which the tone is playful and there is a bit of drama but little angst, no guns and no violence. On the other hand, I do also really like the complex cross and double cross of David Mamet's HEIST with Gene Hackman or the urban grit of the original 70s version of TAKING OF PELHAM ONE TWO THREE - Kubrick's KILLING is also pretty hard to beat (and was a big influence on Tarantino's wonderful JACKIE BROWN).

Anonymous said...

The Usual Suspects
A Fish Called Wanda
Heat
Dog Day Afternoon
Rififi
The Killing


Jeff M.

Margot Kinberg said...

Patti - Good question about heist movies. I do like The Usual Suspects. But I have a real soft spot for The Sting. OK, maybe not, strictly speaking, a heist movie, but still...

George said...

I'm with Margot: THE STING. I love A FISH CALLED WANDA, too.

RkR said...

Was ESCAPADE considered a heist film, or just a spy film? There are heists in FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE as well, but THE STING and THOMAS CROWN are great.

Anonymous said...

Rififi is my favorite. Sexy Beast has a great heist, but that's really not the focus of the movie.

Deb

pattinase (abbott) said...

Another good one is THE RED CIRCLE-although it is in French. LE CIRCLE ROUGE, I think.

Dana King said...

All of my choices have been mentioned, but one: RESERVOIR DOGS. It's a heist movie, even though the heist taks place before the movie starts, and we never see it. George V. Higgins would have been proud.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Not long ago, I saw Michael Caine's FLAWLESS and I thought it was a brilliant film.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I don't know if I ever saw FLAWLESS. Will have to look. RESERVOIR DOGS really holds up. Can't bear that one scene though. You know the one I mean.

Anders E said...

This one and LADYKILLERS.

Charles Gramlich said...

Tucking a heist in with character studies. Sounds like a John D. MacDonald book to me. :)

Anonymous said...

Every time I hear "Stuck in the Middle With You" I think of that scene. I meant to include it on my list.


Jeff M.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Oh, the original LADYKILLERS was priceless. The remake NOT.

Dan_Luft said...

Has no one mentioned The Killing or, more recently, The Score? Both a lot of fun. A forgotten movie I've seen several times is the Sean Connery/ Donald Sutherland movie The Great Train Robbery. That was the first heist movie I ever saw.

Anonymous said...

I did mention THE KILLING.


Jeff M.

Kelly Robinson said...

Don't forget The Great Muppet Caper.

Cap'n Bob said...

To Catch a Thief.