Dark Passage

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On September 27, 1947, Warner Bros. studios released the movie Dark Passage, starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall.  This was the real-life couples’ third movie together; their last would be in 1948 in John Huston’s Key Largo.  The use of the “subjective camera” technique (which I personally find annoying) in the beginning of the film is more than compensated for by the many location shots of San Francisco, looking its post-war best.

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Dark Passage was adapted from a novel, originally published as Convicted, by the lesser-known writer of noir, David Goodis.  It was his first successful novel, after years of writing advertising copy for PR firms and publishing short stories in pulp magazines.  Goodis had arrived in Hollywood to work as a screenwriter in 1942 and would continue to live and work there until 1950.  Dark Passage alone netted Goodis $25,000 in serial rights from the Saturday Evening Post, as well as a new, more remunerative contract with Warner Bros., and film deals for two more of his novels.  Goodis could not sustain this level of success, however.  He eventually returned home to Philadelphia to look after family, and wrote original paperbacks for Fawcett.  His spent his later years as a near recluse, and died in 1967 at the age of 49.  Dark Passage remains his best-known work.

 

4 thoughts on “Dark Passage”

  1. Thanks for all the background info on author/screenwriter David Goodis.

    I hear you re: the subjective camera. I find it too distracting. Also, I don’t like that Agnes Moorehead has such limited screen time in this film. However, San Francisco itself looks fab, and it is an interesting story. In fact, you’ve made me want to watch it again this weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

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