The Naked City (1948)

2007 #112
Jules Dassin | 92 mins | DVD | PG

The Naked CityPolice procedural film noir, shot entirely on location in New York (unusual at the time).

The story is quite straightforward — girl is murdered, police investigate — but it exists mainly as a structure on which to hang perspectives of the city, its criminals and its law enforcement (though in an infinitely less pretentious way than that sounds). The odd, character-less voice-over narration is more puzzling than any mystery in the plot.

The acting is sometimes stilted and some of the direction is actually a little flat, but there are enough enjoyable elements to cover for it — particularly the chance to see so much footage of a real city at this time.

4 out of 5

2 thoughts on “The Naked City (1948)

  1. A very influential movie and one I like a lot. I watched the Arrow Blu-ray a few months back and it looks very fine indeed.
    I also got a bit of a kick out of seeing myself name-checked in the acknowledgments in the accompanying booklet.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That is pretty nifty! I picked up that Blu-ray in a sale recently, actually — I’ve been meaning to re-watch the film for quite a while; I suspect I’ll get more out of it now than I did eight years ago (even though I gave it 4/5). It’s still in its cellophane right now though…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.