Of course, many folks know about Kiss Me Deadly, but we saw another one from late in the noir cycle (clearly, a lot of bad scripts helped kill noir!), called City of Fear. Vince Edwards (yes, Dr. Ben Casey) and a canister of Cobalt 60 (whose radioactive properties are quite exaggerated) that the escapee thinks is heroin. You'd think a story like that would move a lot faster than this one did.
Actually, after 11 days of Columbia "noir," it seems to me that Columbia as a studio either just didn't understand what made noir tick, or didn't care, or generally had worse scripts than other studios of the same time (some late 1940s, some late 1950s). Don't know my film studio history well enough to guess which...
Has anyone seen any of these:
City of Fear
The Burglar
Murder by Contract
two of the best were:
The Sniper
The Lineup
and not just because they were set in San Francisco back when you could drive all the way down Market Street Emotion: smile
Mysti
Of course, many folks know about Kiss Me Deadly, but we saw another one from late in the noir cycle ... because they were set in San Francisco back when you could drive all the way down Market Street Emotion: smile Mysti

Your talk about "nuclear movies" brings to mind the British thriller (not really noir, but more of a police procedural) Seven Days to Noon (and I believe there was another British movie in a similar vein although the name escapes me now) but grown out of that same environment of nuclear anxiety.
I think that it was always a bit of an odd fit. The earlier world of crime thrillers, back in the thirties, never had any problem with high tech science fiction gadgets rays and robots and bizarre death- dealing inventions in that same world of thugs and gangsters and dark alleys and dames and criminal kingpins but I think that the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki transformed our vision of those kinds of weapons pushed them out of the world of The Shadow and the fantasy- edged crime thriller and into a whole different world the real world.
In a way, when we tried to deal with that apocalytic reality, it just couldn't be tugged back into that smaller, familiar, more contained "gangster" world but had to push out into the more fantastical (and in some ways safer) world of science fiction, fantasy, monster movies, apocalyptic and science fictional allegory that came in the fifties and afterward.
Speaking of nuclear anxiety, at moving off topic, I'd read about this real event a few years ago that I always thought would make the basis of a great movie only I don't think anything was ever done with it.

Apparently they always rig the toll plazas near nuclear facilities with radiation detectors, on the off chance that if something manages to get smuggled out of the facility, they can catch it when it goes through the toll plaza and gets photographed.
And it happened one day that something triggered the radiation counter at a toll plaza near some nuclear facility - only it didn't have anything at all to do with a theft from that facility. It turned out to be a truck hauling steel rebar. So what had triggered the detector?

It turned out to be the steel rebar. The steel itself, which they soon found out had been cast in Mexico and sold into the U.S., was radioactive.
How could this be?
So they began to investigate back to the place where the rebar had been manufactured where did the steel come from and they traced it back and they ultimately found out what had happened.

It turns out that a hospital in Mexico had bought a machine for providing radiation treatments to cancer patients. The heart of this thing is a wheel-shaped vessel full of highly radioactive pellets they use the word pellets, but they're actually quite small tiny grains smaller than a bee-bee, all packed inside this container and the container safely put inside this machine that's designed to provide very precise and limited exposure to the patient.

Unfortunately, though the hospital had spent the money on the machine, they never bothered to actually hire anybody who knew how to use it so the machine ended up in storage and there it sat.

What happened next depends on who you ask. If you ask the hospital, they'll say that this guy broke into their storage area and stole the machine and dumped it on the back of his truck. If you ask the guy, he'll say that the hospital simply scrapped the machine and he rolled his truck in and took the machine.
Whichever is true, what ended up happening is that this guy, with his pick-up truck, rolled it into the storage place, picked up this radiation treatment machine and dumped it into the back of his truck. When he did this, the container containing all of those thousands of little granules of highly radioative material promptly cracked open.

As he drove the truck down the road, with the machine bouncing up and down in the back, it proceeded to spill out those highly radioactive pellets, into the back of the truck and off the back of the truck onto the highway, where other cars rolled over them, burying some of them into the road surface and picking some of them up in their tires and carrying them to God-knows-where.
Eventually, the guy took the machine to a local junk yard, which bought it from him for scrap. He dumped it out there, scattering countless more pellets, which got mixed in with the other scrap.

Meanwhile, of course, the back of his truck still had countless numbers of these little radioactive particles in the back, irradiating the truck, irradiating him, irradiating anybody, including his son, who rode in the truck to the tune of a few thousand X-rays a day.

Back at the junk yard they're in the business of selling scrap metal, mostly to a local company that melts the scrap down and recasts, mostly to be used as metal table and chair legs for outdoor furniture and as steel-reinforcement bars for concrete. Rebar.

So they'd bring over this big magnet and while the radioactive pellets weren't magnetic, they were by this time thoroughly mixed in with the scrap so with every pile of scrap steel, up would come a great bunch of radioactive material which would be sent off to the recycling place, where it would be melted down with the steel, become mixed in with it, making the steel table and chair legs and rebar radioactive which were then sent off to become parts of furniture.

At which point, finally, some of that rebar happened to pass through that tool booth plaze and trip the detector and everybody found out what was going on.
By then, of course, the guy with the truck and various members of his family and a bunch of people at the scrap yard were suffering from radiation sickness.
They had to literally bury the guy's truck in a block of concrete.

They had to dig up vast area of the junk yard and entomb that in concrete to make sure that they managed to get rid of all the irradiated material ditto with a lot of the stuff at the recyling place with the stuff that had become permanently irradiated.

They had to take radiation detectors and take them down all of the miles of highway travelled by the truck to locate and dig out all of the radioactive pellets buried in the highway.
And recover all of those chair and table legs and the rebar that hadn't already been incorporated into buildings.
As for the rebar that was already put into buildings they figured that the radiation levels from the rebar, given the concrete jacket, was probably safe enough to leave where it was.
And as for the pellets that may have been picked up in people's tires? Nothing they could really do about it. No doubt they're still out there somewhere.
NMS
"nmstevens"
Whichever is true, what ended up happening is that this guy, with his pick-up truck, rolled it into the storage ... he did this, the container containing all of those thousands of little granules of highly radioative material promptly cracked open.

Etc.
That's quite a story.
Did you know the steel from sunken WWI battleships is highly sought after? It seems all steel produced in the modern age is slightly radioactive, and for the most sensitive instruments they need the radiation-free steel they recover from the guns.

Martin B
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And as for the pellets that may have been picked up in people's tires? Nothing they could really do about it. No doubt they're still out there somewhere.

Martin's comment is also true: since all the open-air nuclear bomb testing of the 50s and 60s, virtually all commercial steel in the world is slightly radioactive.
Alan Brooks

A with an Underwood
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nmstevens wrote some great stuff.
So, the first thing to remember is that film noir in its purest form is quite different from crime dramas or police procedurals.

As film noir died in America, it began to transform in one direction into police procedurals, aided and abetted by studios who often wimped out and slapped redemptive endings on film noir stories that would have been much better w/out them.
It began to transform in another direction as science fiction, and then the tropes of film noir rapidly fell away. There's a fabulous movie that is very noirish, a bunch of people being held captive by crooks ON AN ABOVE GROUND NUCLEAR TEST SITE. That one is still much more noir than science fiction, and you can see how our deep fears about this do mesh with the fears/experiences of war that film noir grew to its best flowering from (awkward, sorry!)...
Seeing bad late-cycle noir films makes it clear that the genre in its then-current definition was just plain old played out. Plus the country was not in the mood to look at the dark side anymore, it was marching to a different set of orders, a set of orders that built up the simmering fear and outrage that fueled the breath burst of 70s noir (oh, plus terrifying economic decay etc. etc.).
Anyway, my point is merely that there is an interesting relationship between dying noir films and emerging sci fi, and it has nothing to do with crime films in general, as far as I can tell.

JMO, as always Emotion: wink
Mysti