The Lost Weekend

  • Directors: Billy Wilder
  • Producers: Charles Brackett
  • Writers: Charles R Jackson, Charles Brackett, Billy Wilder
  • Genres: Drama, Romance
  • Actors: Ray Milland, Jane Wyman

The Lost Weekend recounts the prognosis of an alcoholic New York writer, Don Birnam (Milland), over the last half of a six year period, and in particular on a weekend alcoholic binge.

Moving from a shot of the Manhattan skyline to an apartment, with a whisky bottle hung outside a window, Don and Wick are packing for a weekend vacation. Don, a supposed recovering alcoholic, has been on the wagon for ten days Wick believes. After Don’s girlfriend Helen St James (Wyman) arrives, Don urges his brother to agree to taking a later train, and urges him to go to a Barbirolli concert with Helen, while he collects his thoughts at home. Wick (Phillip Terry), having disposed of his brother’s hidden supply of drink, reluctantly agrees, despite seeing Helen as his brother’s ‘girl’. Helen, slightly mockingly, claims to be trying not to love Don while he is trying not to drink. On their way out of the building, Wick reassures Helen he has found Don’s hidden supply of alcohol, and points out Don is broke. A few minutes later, the cleaning lady arrives for work, but Don cons her out of her wages, and sends her away.

Nat returns Don’s typewriter, which he lost at Gloria’s home during his fall. After Helen persuades him that ‘Don the writer’ and ‘Don the drunk’ are the same person, Don finally commits to writing his novel The Bottle, dedicated to Helen, recounting the events of the weekend. He drops a cigarette into a glass of whisky, rather than drinking it. Recalling, while packing for his lost weekend, that his mind was on a bottle suspended just outside his window, he ponders, over a reversal of the opening shot, how many other people are in the same position as himself in New York City.

The Big Clock

  • Directors: John Farrow
  • Producers: John Farrow, Richard Maibaum
  • Writers: Story, Kenneth Fearing, Screenplay, Jonathan Latimer
  • Genres: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery, Thriller
  • Actors: Ray Milland, Charles Laughton, Maureen O Sullivan, Harry Morgan

The story is told in flashback. When it begins, George Stroud (Milland) is shown hiding from the police behind the “big clock” ― the largest and most sophisticated one ever built, which dominates the lobby of the giant publishing company where he works.

Stroud, a crime magazine’s crusading editor who is eager to spend more time with his wife, plans a long-postponed vacation from his job. Instead of meeting his wife at the train station, however, Stroud is preoccupied by an offer by his boss. He begins drinking and spends the evening out on the town with a glamorous blonde. She is later murdered and Stroud is assigned by his Hearst-like publishing boss Janoth (Laughton) to find the killer.

While investigating, Stroud tries to keep the facts of his night with the woman a secret because witnesses could recognize him. As the investigation proceeds to its conclusion, Stroud must try to disrupt his ordinarily brilliant investigative team as they increasingly build evidence (albeit wrong) that he is the killer.

Dial M for Murder

  • Directors: Alfred Hitchcock
  • Producers: Associate producer, William Hill, Uncredited, Alfred Hitchcock
  • Writers: Stage play amp screenplay, Frederick Knott
  • Genres: Crime, Mystery, Thriller
  • Actors: Ray Milland, Grace Kelly, Robert Cummings, John Williams, Anthony Dawson

Tony Wendice (Ray Milland) is a former tennis player who married Margot (Grace Kelly) partly for her money. To please his wife, he has given up tennis and now sells sports equipment. Margot once had a relationship with Mark Halliday (Robert Cummings), an American crime novelist, but broke it off when Mark went to the U.S. for a year. In time, they stopped writing to each other.

Tony and Margot have made their wills, naming each other as beneficiary. For a year, Tony meticulously plans Margot’s murder. She has no idea that Tony knows of her love for Mark. He has gone to great lengths to steal a handbag containing one of Mark’s letters, and even assumed the role of an anonymous Brixton-based blackmailer to find out whether she would pay to have it back. (She did, but he asked for only ВЈ50.) He even watched them having a little farewell party (eating spaghetti with mushrooms) in Mark’s studio flat in Chelsea.

Tony slyly withdraws small amounts of money for a year, collecting ВЈ1,000 in (used) one-pound notes, with which he plans to pay a contract killer. He singles out the perfect man to do the job: C. A. Swann (Anthony Dawson), who now calls himself “Captain Lesgate”, a former acquantaince who has embarked on a life of petty crime since even before leaving Cambridge where he and Tony were both students. By following him and finding out about his past and associations, Tony soon gets enough to blackmail Swann into murdering his wife.

Tony enters the room to find Margot and the inspector, and Mark too. He realizes he’s been found out and congratulates the inspector. He then offers everyone a drink, acting very casual, as tears begin to stream down his wife’s face. The last scene is of the inspector, acting in a manner that shows he’s proud of himself, as he combs his mustache.