As early as 1946, French film critic Nino Frank was able to identify a new trend in the American film industry, one that he labeled film noir. Loosely translated, the term described movies that had an overall black or dark nature that described both their cinematographical qualities using light and shadow to create mood and their subject matter that often dealt in criminal activity or an emotionally oppressive atmosphere. This last was often depicted in literal terms as the descent of characters from naive or law-abiding citizens into desperate, hunted souls. Here are the cold-blooded killers, crusading cops, stolid Feds, stoolies, ex-cons, femme fatales, long suffering wives and lovers, conniving grifters, and innocent dupes that populate an underworld that most people never encounter in their daily lives. In Gats, Gams, and Guts: A Field Guide to the Dark World of Film Noir, the best examples of the genre are presented in handy to read and accessible capsule reviews highlighting the actors and actresses, the directors and scriptwriters, and the cinematographers and novelists who inadvertently created a uniquely American cinematic form.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Pierre V. Comtois is a former newspaper reporter writing from Lowell, MA who has been editing and publishing Fungi, the Magazine of Fantasy and Weird Fiction intermittently since 1984. Marvel Comics in the 1980s: An Issue by Issue Field Guide to a Pop Culture Phenomenon was published in 2015 by Twomorrows Pubs. Earlier volumes include Marvel Comics in the 1960s and 1970s. The author has also written a number of books including novels such as Strange Company and Sometimes a Warm Rain Falls; non-fiction such as Our Lives, Our Fortunes, Our Sacred Honor; and short story collections such as The Way the Future Was, The Portable Pierre V. Comtois, Different Futures,and Autumnal Tales. Novels include Goat Mother and Others, Scheduled for Extinction, Desert Breeze Press (2018), and from Rogue Phoenix Press Talismanic (2018), Extra Galaxia (2019), and Novus Intelligens (2019). Comtois has also found the time to contribute non-fiction articles to such magazines as World War II, America's Civil War, Wild West, and Military History which have been collected in Hazardous History. In similar format to Gats, Gams, and Guts, Comtois has also written Fantastic Cinema in the Years Before CGI.