Enter the world of film noir, a world of darkness, ambiguity, and moral corruption. Meet the cynical and obsessive heroes of film noir portrayed by actors like Humphrey Bogart, Peter Lorre, James Cagney, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. You may encounter a gun-toting gangster, a femme fatale wrapped in fur, a detective with the brim of his hat turned down, or a desperate murderer lurking in the shadows of a doorway. It's a world we all know - the seedy underbelly of the American Dream, and every bit as much a part of our culture. This wonderfully exhaustive text - tallying more than three hundred thousand words with hundreds of film stills and photos new to the work - distills everything about the genre into one volume from movies to stars to themes and motifs, and brings us up to date with contemporary contributions to the genre. Essentially a new work, this completely revised, expanded and redesigned classic is a pioneering work and the final word on a dark and mysterious subject.