I've read six of David Goodis's novels. You could almost predict that fatal bar fight from reading his novels. According to Wiki he was "doing research" for his writing. Thanks for the visit, George.
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I've read six of David Goodis's novels. You could almost predict that fatal bar fight from reading his novels. According to Wiki he was "doing research" for his writing. Thanks for the visit, George. I am looking forward to reading this one. I enjoyed your review although I skipped a couple of paragraphs since I haven't read it yet. Thanks, Matt, for making me aware of the film version of "Nightfall," which is available on YouTube and which I'll definitely watch.
Your name is David Goodis. Your streak of shitty luck, capped by your wife of two years dumping you last year, might be turning around. Your second novel will soon hit the silver screen with Bogie and Bacall. Time to celebrate. Then again, luck is fickle. You need to bang out another novel. Why not another dark one, like the lucky one, another Dark Passage? Maybe dark is your metier. A dark bar. A painting of a diner. The diner is well lighted inside but in a dark part of town.
Only three people are inside, plus the man behind the lunch counter. The three customers seem lost in thought. It feels like a lonely place. You take out your notebook and write these words :. The place was well off Fourth Street, and the weak yellow light from its window was the only light on the narrow street. Vanning took her in there and they sat at a small table near the window. They were alone in the place.
It was very small. Their waiter was the proprietor, and he was a man who looked as if one of his own meals would do him a lot of good. He was trying to be friendly, but weariness prevented him from getting it across. He took their order and went away. You work out some ideas in your head. Write more words in your notebook. You finish your gin rickey. You have another and you jot down notes until you finish the drink.
Then you walk back through the hot sticky night to your lonely apartment. You sit down at your typewriter. You insert a fresh sheet of paper into the machine. You stare at the blank page. You look through the notes you made in the bar.
You take a deep breath, nodding your head a couple of times, and you type :. It was one of those hot sticky nights that makes Manhattan show its age. There was something dreary and stagnant in the way all this syrupy heat refused to budge. It was anything but a night for labor, and Vanning stood up and walked away from the tilted drawing board. He brushed past a large metal box of water colors, heard the crash as the box hit the floor. That seemed to do it. That ended any inclination he might have had for finishing the job tonight.
Heat came into the room and settled itself on Vanning. He lit a cigarette. He told himself it was time for another drink.
Walking to the window, he told himself to get away from the idea of liquor. The heat was stronger than liquor. He stood there at the window, looking out upon Greenwich Village, seeing the lights, hearing noises in the streets. He had a desire to be part of the noise. He wanted to get some of those lights, wanted to get in on that activity out there, whatever it was. He wanted to talk to somebody. He wanted to go out. He was afraid to go out. And he realized that.
The realization brought on more fright. He rubbed his hands into his eyes and wondered what was making this night such a difficult thing.
And suddenly he was telling himself that something was going to happen tonight Your fingers fly across the keyboard. Ten thousand words a day. You have the title by the time you type He didn't even blink when he heard the sirens, although he knew they were coming toward him and toward no one else. The End. You know it has flaws. You know Dark Passage was a lucky fluke. That Edward Hopper loneliness. Yeah, the flaws. Interior and spoken for the two viewpoints. Spoken for everyone else.
You make them either very very good or horrid. Like the nursery rhyme. Like Irene and Martha. You write roughshod over facts sometimes. Like with the plot. Fingerprinted to buy a car bwaaahahahaha. But back to Nightfall. Stop with the damned distractions! He felt just a bit sorry for himself. At thirty-three a man ought to have a wife and two or three children.
A man ought to have a home. A man shouldn't be standing here alone in a place without meaning, without purpose. There ought to be some really good reason for waking up in the morning. There ought to be some impetus. There ought to be something. Postscript : You die a couple of days following a bar fight nineteen years after publishing Nightfall.
You were The film adaptation of Nightfall was released in , nine years after the book, and without Bogie or Bacall. Your books go out of print but have rebounded and are bigger than ever, riding a revival wave of noir. George September 28, at AM. Mathew Paust September 28, at AM.
TracyK September 29, at AM. Mathew Paust September 29, at AM. Barry Ergang September 30, at PM. Mathew Paust September 30, at PM. Newer Post Older Post Home. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom.
Where discerning readers can get up to date coverage of crime movies, books and comics. Here you can expect news, interviews, essays, recommendations and enthusiastic ramblings about crime fiction in all its exciting forms. Goodis' protagonist, "Jim Vanning," is remarkably capable of dealing with the adversity that continuously confronts him, much more so than the author's usual protagonist. Enjoying catching up with Goodis' other work, more than half a century after seeing the Truffaut adaptation and picking up a paperback edition of Down There. Glad to see the man is back in print Post a Comment. Nightfall could easily have been adapted for Hitchcock.
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Nightfall, Cassidy’s Girl and Night Squad by David Goodis
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