Visit the National Portrait Gallery in October to see three classic black-and-white films connected by the “red scare” of the 1950s:
Good Night, and Good Luck (2005)
Friday, October 3, 7:00 p.m.
David Strathairn stars as the newsman Edward R. Murrow in this dramatization of Murrow’s 1954 showdown with Senator Joseph McCarthy. Directed by George Clooney, Good Night, and Good Luck was nominated for six Oscars. American University history professor Robert Griffith will introduce the film.
The Maltese Falcon (1941)
Wednesday, October 8, 7:00 p.m.
Based on the 1930 Dashiell Hammett novel, this 1941 film noir stars Humphrey Bogart as detective Sam Spade, who must cut through a web of deceit, greed, and murder to obtain a priceless statuette of a falcon. The Maltese Falcon marks John Huston’s directorial debut. Historian David Ward of the Portrait Gallery will introduce the film
On the Waterfront (1954)
Wednesday, October 15, 7:00 p.m.
Marlon Brando and Eva Marie Saint star in this 1954 drama about violence and corruption on the docks of New York. On the Waterfront is directed by Elia Kazan and scored by Leonard Bernstein. The film won eight Academy Awards, including best picture, best actor, and best director. Portrait Gallery senior historian Sidney Hart will introduce the film.
All screenings are located in the museum’s Nan Tucker McEvoy Auditorium. They are free and open to the public; no tickets are required. Doors open at 6:30; seating is first come, first served. More information on NPG's events page.
Portraits of Edward R. Murrow, Joseph McCarthy, Dashiell Hammett, and Marlon Brando are on view now at the National Portrait Gallery. You can learn about these figures and their portraits as part of the regular Thursday-evening Face-to-Face portrait talks this month.
Joseph McCarthy, Roy M Cohn, Ralph Flanders (cropped)/Unidentified Artist,1954/Gelatin silver print/National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Caption for Good Night, and Good Luck image: © Warner Independent Pictures. No other uses are permitted without the prior written consent of owner. Use of the material in violation of the foregoing may result in civil and/or criminal penalties.
Marlon Brando in On The Waterfront/Anselmo Ballester,1954/Color photolithographic halftone poster/National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution