Here I am, the dean of Noir University, with the NAT (Noir Assessment Test) results, though just before grading the papers I disappeared and got amnesia, which threw everybody at school for a loop and they thought I was in a prison camp. They were screaming and crying. Then when I turned up on campus all disoriented, all I could remember was that my hotel room was so hot and I was singing, “Hocus pocus . . . that’s love!” I’m recovering. In fact, later a man said the show would be amusing. I said, “Yes, I would like to laugh. It would be fun to laugh.” Then I went out and shot all the baby chicks in the backyard. Now I’m myself again.
The winning graduate: Buzzy Lawler of Richmond, Virginia, an indie-music buyer and member of the band Nat King Kong (see his essay at villagevoice.com/noiressay). Questions ran in the Voice‘s November 24-30 issue (villagevoice.com/issues/0447/schlesinger2.php). Coming soon: the GNAT (Graduate Noir Assessment Test).
1. The Killing. Her lover in the film is played by Vince Edwards, who became Dr. Ben Casey on television.
2. Goldfish. Double Indemnity. Book shop. Window shade. The Big Sleep.
3. (c) Vera in Detour.
4. Kitty’s (Ava Gardner) green silk handkerchief with golden Irish harps in The Killers. Green mint in cocktails and a green clock, The Big Clock.
5. (b) Phyllis Dietrichson is to Walter Neff.
6. Mirror: The Lady From Shanghai; Phantom Lady; The Big Heat. Portraits: Laura; The Woman in the Window; Phantom Lady (also The Big Heat).
7. Go away together with the suggestion of marriage in The Killing.
8. (i) Vera in Detour.
9. Kiss Me Deadly; They Live by Night; Detour (also moments of highway in The Postman Always Rings Twice, The Killers, Gun Crazy, etc.). Orson Welles as Michael O’Hara in Lady From Shanghai.
10. Pickup on South Street. Edward Dmytryk named Jules Dassin.
11. The Bruce Goldstein of Film Forum question: Apartment doors open in, not out.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 28, 2004