JULES DASSIN (1911-2008)

jules dassin
I have to admit I don’t get the recent groundswell of love for Jules Dassin. His noirs (Brute Force, The Naked City, Thieves Highway and Night in the City) are more force-fed than fluid and certainly don’t hold up next to those directed by the true masters of the genre (Mann, Siodmak, Tourneur, Walsh and Ulmer). I sense some critics feel an intriguing career was nipped in the bud by the Hollywood blacklist, but Dassin’s subsequent work in Europe makes the case there wasn’t much there in the first place.

1942  Nazi Agent ***
1942  Reunion in France ***
1944  The Canterville Ghost ***
1947  Brute Force ***1/2
1948  The Naked City ***1/2
1949  Thieves Highway ***
1950  Night and the City ***1/2
1955  Du Rififi chez les hommes ***1/2
1960  Never on a Sunday ***
1964  Topkapi ***
1981  Circle of Two **1/2

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