Around The City

Once location shooting became an fixture of film noir directors managed to use about every landmark and geographic feature in and around Los Angeles.   Unlike everything in Bunker Hill which is gone, many of the these places still exist and still attract  filmmakers.

The Bradbury Building

The five storey Bradbury building in downtown Los Angeles was built in 1893.  Its ornate ironwork interior was first used by  director Billy Wilder in Double Indemnity and has subsequently been seen in more than 24 films.  The building is still a functioning office building and has become something of a tourist attraction for visitors.

Edmond O’Brien contfronts his killer inside The Bradbury Building in D.O.A. Ann Sheridan’s attorney’s office inside the Bradbury Building in The Unfaithful.

MacArthur Park

MacArthur Park is located west of downtown on Wilshire Blvd.  The park dates to the 1880s and was formerly known as Westlake Park.  It was popular for boating and place for young couples to meet.  The park was used in a half dozen noirs.

The name of the park was changed after WWII to honor General Douglas MacArthur.   The Westlake district in which the park is located is plagued by drug dealers and high crime.

Broderick Crawford talks with Ruth Roman on park bench in 1954’s Down Three Dark Streets. Zachary Scott walks along the lake in The Unfaithful . Arthur Kennedy and Lizabeth Scott on the boat dock in Too Late For Tears. Edmond O’Brien waits for Ida Lupino in 1953’s The Bigamist. MacArthur Park Today

During the film noir era most travel was by train so the Union Train Station near downtown certainly was used in noir.  The station was built in 1938 in the mission style architecture and remains a popular location, especially for retro films.  It has been used in more that 50 films

Burt Lancaster inside the terminal in Criss Cross. William Holden strolls the terminal in 1950’s Union  Station.  The film was set in New York City but filmed entirely in L.A. Edmund Gwenn walks out of Union Station in The  Bigamist. Dick Powell walks the columned corridor in Cry Danger. Union Station today

Malibu Beach

Malibu became well known as a backdrop for the surfer and beach party films of the 1960s.  But long before that the area was popular with noir directors.    It’s provided quite a contrast in the otherwise shadowy world of noir.

Vince Edwards goes for swim in 1958’s Murder By Contract.  In the backseat is Herschel Bernardi Joan Crawford at a beach house in Mildred Pierce in  1945. Ralph Meeker gets chased by thugs on the beach in Robert Aldrich’s  Kiss Me Deadly. Mickey Rooney contemplates on the beach in Drive A Crooked Road  in 1954.   The house directly  behind Rooney was also used in 711 Ocean Drive (below)   and Tension (right). Audrey Totter with Lloyd Gough at beach house in  Tension. Edmond O’Brien plays with his dog in 711 Ocean Drive. King Donovan (his stunt double)  leaps to his death in the atrium in  1949’s Shockproof. American Film Noir The same Malibu house from Kiss Me Deadly  is used  in Loophole in 1954 as Barry Sullivan approaches in car from the other side.