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The Lineup

This is the final movie on the Columbia Noir #1 box set, and if the movies have anything in common, it’s that 1) they’re cheap, and 2) they’re not really noir movies.

This starts off really intriguing — lots of action, and a big mystery.

OK, the mystery is totally gone now, and it’s just a standard procedural. This feels more like a TV episode than a movie at this point.


The Lineup is a 1958 American film noir version of the police procedural television series of the same title that ran on CBS radio from 1950 until 1953, and on CBS television from 1954 until 1960.

So there’s a good reason for that…

This is so weird. I mean, they’re going for an in depth view into the minds of sociopath killers, so they have them standing around glowering at each other, being all tough… And then they have them going “so how did you end up being like this?” which is totally a thing a mobster would say to a hired killer, right? And the killer says “I had a father. I never knew him.”

That must have taken the writers several weeks to come up with.

They’ve working really hard at making these guys interesting — the older guy is teaching the younger guy all about grammer and stuff, and the younger guy (who’s the killer) tells the older guy the last words of everybody he’s killing, and the older guy writes them down enthusiastically. He’s writing a philosophical treatise about last words or something?

So both stone cold sociopaths, but originals.

And it’s all so “wha”. What the fuck were the writers thinking?

But people like this?

So do the critics (except for Internet Reviews, who’s correct).

I guess an attraction here is that we’re getting all these really nice views of oldee tymey San Francisco.

Just when you think can’t get any more stupid…


The Lineup . Don Siegel. 1958.

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