Cult Crime Movies: Discover the 35 Best Dark, Dangerous, Thrilling and Noir Cinema Classics
by Danny Peary
Print Length: 451 pages
Publisher: Workman Publishing Company (December 2, 2014)
Kiss Me, Deadly to Nightmare Alley to The Honeymoon Killers to The American Friend—any fan of crime films will tell you there’s a palpable excitement in living vicariously through the corrupt, seductive, and often downright evil characters that inhabit these shadowy worlds. In this collection of 35 essays drawn from his revered Cult Movies series, cult film specialist Danny Peary examines, dissects, defends, and exalts crime films from his unique and engaging perspective. His writing is a cornerstone of the cult film
culture that continues to flourish today. New to this ebook series are Danny Peary’s cult movie checklists for each genre. Every crime fan will walk away with newly discovered gems to watch, and a newfound appreciation of his or her favorites.
Cult Movies is a 1981 book by Danny Peary, consisting of a series of essays regarding what Peary described as the 100 most representative examples of the cult film phenomenon. The films are presented in alphabetical order, with each chapter featuring a
story synopsis for the covered title, Peary’s response to the film, production and release details, and a brief selection of contemporary critical reviews. In the book’s Foreword, Peary notes that out of the thousands of movies that have been made, “only an extremely
small number have elicited a fiery passion in moviegoers that exists long after their initial releases.” Cult movies are defined by Peary as “special films which for one reason or another have been taken to heart by segments of the movie audience, cherished, protected, and most of all, enthusiastically championed.” He explains that “the typical Hollywood product” never attains cult status since all viewers perceive these average films in more or less the same way, with no real disagreement as to the film’s quality. But cult films “are born in controversy, in arguments over quality, theme, talent and other matters. Cultists believe they are among the blessed few who have discovered something in particular that the average moviegoer and critic have missed – the something that makes the pictures extraordinary.” The book has been reprinted several times, most recently in 1998 by Gramercy Books. Two sequels were published, Cult Movies 2 and Cult Movies 3 with each book reviewing fifty additional cult films.