Don Siegel

b. Donald Siegel

b. October 26, 1912, Chicago, Illinois, USA
d. April 20, 1991, Nipoma, California, USA

Select Bibliography
Articles in Senses
Web Resources

Don Siegel’s forty-nine year career has produced some of the most memorable films of the American cinema. The seminal prison movie Riot in Cell Block 11 (1954), the much imitated sci-fi classic Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), the uncompromising war movie Hell is for Heroes (1962) and the controversial cop thriller Dirty Harry (1971) are just a few examples of the range of his work.

Although a significant number of his feature films have retained great popularity and his name has come to be well known amongst film fans, there is little consistency in the ways in which the director and his work have been accounted for. From reading the critics, one might almost think there were at least two Don Siegels: at one extreme, a workmanlike director of taut action films, technically proficient but imparting little of his own individuality into each project; at the other, a right-wing misogynist whose films explicitly fan inflammatory social debates.

Neither of these assessments seems entirely flattering. Yet one of the fascinations of Don Siegel’s films has been their consistent ability to provoke debate, at the same time as skilfully delivering the pleasures required of the action genres (war, thriller, western and so forth) in which he regularly worked. The multitude of ways in which it is possible to engage with these films is apparent in the range of critical responses cited here. Through this range we can also begin to appreciate the extent to which different ways of approaching film authorship have helped to shape Siegel’s reputation as a director.

Don Siegel’s long career can, in many ways, be seen to exemplify the historically changing role of the director in American cinema, its phases reflecting the industry’s shifting structures. He entered the industry in 1934 as an employee of Warner Bros. Initially engaged as a film librarian, he progressed to the role of assistant editor and thence to assistant head of the insert department. In the late 1930s he established and headed a dedicated montage department, though which he created numerous striking montages for such acclaimed films as The Roaring Twenties (Raoul Walsh, 1939), Blues in the Night (Anatole Litvak, 1941) and Casablanca (Michael Curtiz, 1942). The experience of shooting new material to be combined with stock footage for these sequences encouraged his progression to second unit work. In 1945 he persuaded Jack Warner to allow him to direct a short film of his own. Star in the Night was followed by another short, Hitler Lives (1946), after which he progressed to feature direction with The Verdict (1946) (1).

Whilst his contract with Warners offered steady work along with experience in several areas of the trade and the resultant opportunities for career advancement, in the late ’40s Siegel ended his 14-year relationship with the studio in order to attain a greater freedom of projects. He proceeded to work as a freelance director for a host of studios throughout the late 1940s and 1950s. His position as an independent director, and intermittent producer after 1959, proved critical to his career trajectory, helping to define the range of projects on which he worked and his level of control over them. At the same time it bore the disadvantages of periods without work, the consequent need to accept routine assignments for purely financial reasons, and a temporary shift, in the late 1960s, from film to television work. These uncertainties were cushioned by the formation of an alliance with Universal from the mid-1960s, an association less restrictive than his years at Warners, since it allowed him to act as a producer on several projects as well as to make occasional films for other studios.

Whilst his later status as a producer-director may seem a far cry from montage and second unit work at Warner Brothers, throughout his career Siegel maintained some of the working methods he had developed at that time. These practices are manifest both in choice and execution of projects. Familiar with the constraints of limited time, money and access to actors, he learned to shoot fast, reportedly managing up to 55 camera set-ups in a single day (2). Such productivity was possible only by scrupulous pre-planning although, as his experience developed, he describes the adoption of “a freer style in which I adapted myself more to what the actor did” (3). This is in spite of continuing efforts to ensure the script was perfected before shooting started. His economical production technique extended to editing in camera. Like the meticulous planning of shots, it was cost-effective and also helped maximise his creative control by limiting the scope for producers to re-edit footage.

The Shootist

Siegel’s experience of montage and second unit work and his preferred methods of planning and shooting films are often readily discernible in the finished product. One of the things that second unit work taught him was the requirements of staging a good action scene, be it a fight, car crash, explosion or other staple generic element. Siegel’s oeuvre can certainly be seen as a masterclass in the creation of dynamic and memorable set pieces, from the car chase of The Lineup (1958) to the duel between car and biplane in Charley Varrick (1973). This ability hinges not only on the staging of the scene but also on Siegel’s skill in the editing room, although critics have sometimes overstated the similarities between the editing technique of his early montages and later features (4). Montage sequences were eschewed (although the opening of The Lineup is a rare example, retained in the final cut against Siegel’s wishes) (5). Instead of incessantly replicating a particular style or pace of cutting, Siegel demonstrates an ability to tailor his technique to the demands of theme and narrative. Thus such character pieces as The Beguiled (1971) and The Shootist (1976) range between their domination by a relatively sedate camera and editing style and rapidly cut scenes of dramatic physical action.

The editing of Siegel’s films is always in accord with the style of shooting and the requirements of narrative and genre. Many of his films, perhaps most notably Riot in Cell Block 11, have made use of what has often been referred to as a ‘documentary’ style. Features include the regular use of black and white cinematography that makes use of natural light sources and, in particular, full daylight. Camera movement has tended to be dictated by the movement of the actors. A hand-held camera is often used to enter the fray of fistfights and other bursts of violent action. The urgent potency of Siegel’s work has often been defined less by a seeming verity, though, than through the application of this aesthetic to a ritualistic and heightened delineation of character and conflict. Alan Lovell argues a stylistic shift occurred in the early 1960s whereby “the naturalistic use of settings is replaced by an impressionistic one that often supports the moral position of the main characters” (6). Siegel’s visual style has indeed been subject to change, adapting itself to cinematic fashions, with filmic devices scarcely thinkable in the 1940s and ’50s apparent in such films as The Killers (1964) and Coogan’s Bluff (1969). If a greater use of symbolism seems apparent, though, in the recurrent cruciforms and other religious iconography of Dirty Harry for example, the idea that the director’s shifting style of mise en scène results in his alignment with character morality is, as we shall see, extremely problematic.

Perhaps more than any other feature of Siegel’s films, it is the characterisation of the protagonists that has provided auteur critics with a basis by which to examine the interplay of recurrent features and variations. Lovell’s excellent study outlines the following archetype:

Siegel’s heroes not only reject established society but they also reject any form of social relationships. The typical Siegel hero has no family background, no wife, no children, no personal friends. If he belongs to any social group it is usually an all-male one, held together not by any bonds of sympathy but by a shared goal (7).

Moreover, writes Blake Lucas, he is “unconventional, competent and amoral” (8). These observations are furthered by Richard Combs, who writes that “His protagonists, an unarguably consistent line of defiant loners, outside whatever system may be operating, may be interchangeably one side or the other – which seems to beg all sorts of social issues” (9). In other words, the characterisation of a protagonist is likely to adhere to this template irrespective of whether he operates within or without the law, or aligns himself, however loosely, with any recognisable strand of moral or political enterprise.

Charley Varrick

Siegel’s refusal to provide an unequivocal demarcation between heroic and villainous activity has been critical to the structuring and reception of his films in more ways than one. Moral ambiguity has been central to the manufacture of a pantheon of memorable characters, but interest lies less in these individual creations than in the dynamic between them, and the multiple possibilities open to the viewer and critic in terms of their own positioning in relation to these characters and relationships. If his villains have, at times, been seen as grotesque to a level of parody, there is also, notes Siegel, “a certain normalcy about them. They commit a murder and yet they still have to go to the bathroom” (10). He explains that he represents murderers who see themselves as reasonable people who are misunderstood, expanding, “I also like going the other way. I don’t like my heroes to be all good any more than I like the villains all bad” (11). At the heart of many of his most powerful narratives we see an explicit mirroring between hero and villain. This is, perhaps, most clearly evident in Dirty Harry where, writes Eileen McGarry, “Harry [Clint Eastwood] is complemented by the murderer [Scorpio, played by Andy Robinson]; both are driven to insane and brutal violence, and each side of the duel has certain advantages provided by the law and society” (12). Judith M. Kass finds further examples in The Black Windmill (1974) and Charley Varrick (13) and other instances can be traced back at least as far as The Big Steal (1949), in its bewilderment of masquerades and shifting identities.

The opposition between both hero and villain and the society in which they are placed is critical to underlining the essential similarities between these characters, as well as providing both impetus and setting for the conflicts central to the narrative. More than one critic has seen Siegel’s films as defined, to a significant degree, by a system of oppositions. For Alan Lovell these have included the adventurer versus society, crime versus the law, passion versus control, anarchy versus organisation and violence versus tranquillity, whilst for Robert Mundy the films have revolved around issues of humanity versus inhumanity and rationality versus irrationality (14). As we shall see, the articulation of basic narrative conflicts between opposing individuals, organisations or systems has often been read as polemical although there has been little critical consensus as to the messages postulated.

Siegel’s films have often courted controversy in their address of contemporary social and political issues. As I have noted, the disavowal, so common in his films, of any fundamental difference between hero and villain has often proved pivotal to such debates. Riot in Cell Block 11, produced by the recently incarcerated Walter Wanger, was conceived to some degree as a propagandist petition for prison reform, although the film’s manipulation of viewer identification with various characters is sufficiently complex as to resist such a straightforward role. Just as the narration of that film failed to side unambiguously with either the convicts rioting in protest at prison conditions or the warders attempting to restore order, in Flaming Star (1960) Siegel addressed a topical social conflict between two factions, without upholding the legitimacy of one above the other. A Western centred on the family of Native American half-breed Pacer (Elvis Presley) it explored issues of racial prejudice, although the director was wary of positing too close a correlation between this story and the position of Blacks in contemporary American society (15).

These films attracted the admiration of the critics, who interpreted their refusal to be partisan as an act of engaging valuable social debate. Other films, though, were seen as making more direct political statements and sometimes attracted considerable controversy. This is in spite of significant discrepancies between the perceived politics of different films. We can attribute much of this variation to the influence of contemporary political discourses, the films often seeming to support the dominant systems of the time. In Hollywood, as elsewhere, notions of good and evil prove to be ideologically determined.

As far back as 1946, Siegel’s short film Hitler Lives was conceived as explicitly propagandist, warning against the continued threat of Nazism. “We were too close to the end of World War II to have any perspective,” he admits. “Everything was overdrawn, overstressed. We showed the normal German race as viciously as we portrayed the Nazis… When the narrator spoke of America, or Americans, his voice rang out with approval” (16). Crude though the message may have been, Hollywood characteristically awarded an Oscar to the two-reel documentary that best supported the political status quo. A few years later, the feature film No Time for Flowers (1952) directed its virulence at America’s new number one menace: Communism.

One of the films that has generated the most heated and long-running debates about its political intentions, in Siegel’s oeuvre and in cinema at large, is Invasion of the Body Snatchers. This, too, was produced in the era when America obsessed over the ‘Red Menace’ but is far more ambiguous in its message than No Time for Flowers. Depicting the covert substitution of small town citizens with soulless ‘pod people’, it renders an unequivocal moral polarity between the film’s ever-shrinking group of human protagonists and the alien impostors in a way that Riot in Cell Block 11 and Flaming Star resisted. As in much first-class science fiction, the narrative insinuates its potential to be read as a metaphor for issues rooted in contemporary civilisation.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

To interpret this metaphor has proved an irresistible challenge for swathes of critics and audiences. For many, its message has seemed self-evident. Some regarded it as palpably anti-Communist, as the pod people reject individualism (and, in the case of an abandoned vegetable stand, pointedly capitalist endeavour) in favour of collectivism and the elimination of behavioural or economic difference. A more popular interpretation thought it to be anti-McCarthyist, in its depiction of individuals betrayed by former friends and hunted down by a united majority in order to assert the supremacy of the dominant political system. This interpretation gains weight in the light of screenwriter Daniel Mainwaring’s own brushes with the Hollywood witch-hunts (17). Various members of the film’s production team have participated in the debate. Actress Dana Wynter, who stars as Becky, is confident that the film expresses an anti-McCarthyite message, “caught by those with the wit to catch it,” although she acknowledges “never [having] heard any mention on set of political implication” (18). Kevin McCarthy, who plays protagonist Miles, offers an additional interpretation of the film “as an attack on or satire of Madison Avenue attitudes. The whole idea of programming us to eat the same foods, drink the same beverages, conform to certain modes of behaviour” (19). Siegel, meanwhile, joked that the pods represented the front office (20).

Perhaps the most useful analysis has been provided by Tracy Knight, who argues that the most captivating fictions, Invasion of the Body Snatchers amongst them, have “’Rorschach plots’, fictional inkblots that playfully interact with us and our beliefs. Their ambiguity invites us to project our own interests and biases upon the story in order to wrest meaning from their tantalising lack of explicitness” (21). The idea of a ‘Rorschach plot’ is of far greater importance in understanding this film, and Siegel’s wider oeuvre, than pinning down the truth of one interpretation over another.

15 years after Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Siegel was to make his most controversial film, Dirty Harry. Interpretations of, and responses to, the messages that it supposedly delivered dominated its critical reception. As all controversies do, this debate has faded – though not disappeared – and other features of the film have come to be regarded as equally important to a critical understanding. Dirty Harry revolves around the pursuit of a serial killer by a maverick cop who begins to operate outside the law when frustrated by a bureaucracy that restricts his methods in deference to the civil rights of the criminal suspect. The film created something of a critical furore on its release, the controversy hinging on the extent to which audiences were encouraged to identify with Harry’s seeming advocation of vigilante justice.

Dirty Harry

If Dirty Harry‘s most famous detractor was critic Pauline Kael, the sense of moral outrage extended considerably further than her well-documented response (22). Others were to describe it as “fascist propaganda and sadomasochistic wet dreams” and “sick and profoundly dangerous” (23). In an echo of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, there is some disparity between the ways in which the film’s makers have responded to the critical reception and accounted for the intentions of the production. Paul Smith offers an interesting account of how Clint Eastwood and Don Siegel have answered the film’s critics, noting that “While Siegel effectively distances himself from what is troublesome about the film, Eastwood is drawn into the process of defending the film and its politics” (24). For all Siegel’s efforts to skirt around the issue, though, even one of his most stalwart supporters, biographer Stuart Kaminsky, found himself unable to escape the conclusion that

Don Siegel knew what he was doing. Each scene is carefully constructed to inflame lower middle-class phobias and to toy with its most sacred symbols, like the Constitution and the gun. It is an immoral picture, cracking a revolutionary whip whose sting can only intensify mistrust and suspicion at various levels of society (25).

Unlike Body Snatchers, responses to Dirty Harry do not vary according to differing interpretations of metaphor. That the film is structured in such a way as to position the spectator in opposition to the killer, Scorpio, is not in question. What is at stake is the extent to which the film is seen to align the viewer unequivocally with Dirty Harry and to present his behaviour as acceptable or even desirable. Eileen McGarry has argued eloquently for the mirroring between hero and villain, even whilst the viewer is encouraged to accept that “the young psychotic killer is portrayed as so exceedingly debased, horrible, and subhuman that he deserves to be slaughtered without consideration” (26). John Baxter writes of the triangle Siegel creates between hero, villain and viewer from a slightly different perspective when he argues that in both “his murderers and vigilantes… he encourages us to see mirrored our own urges for violence and anarchy” (27). He continues:

What Siegel illustrates in his work is the implicit contract that exists between criminals and society. We need criminals to act out our own fantasies of violence. Siegel finds proof of this symbiosis in our legal system, an imperfect tool which we ourselves sabotage. His films mock its structures. The police force in Madigan [1968] is corrupt. Riot in Cell Block 11 and Escape from Alcatraz [1979] attack the prison system. Coogan’s Bluff, like Dirty Harry, parodies sociology, legal procedure, and especially the concept of rehabilitation (28).

In putting issues of identification, which operate at both intellectual and visceral levels, at the heart of the viewer’s relationship to Dirty Harry, we can identify a further example of a ‘Rorschach plot’ that elicits a range of responses through its operation on multiple levels. At the same time, the proficiency with which the director employs filmic technique to deliver potent genre thrills renders problematic his claims of moral and political neutrality. Nevertheless, knowing the response that his film will elicit in a large proportion of its target audience and offering a route for moral alignment that will help the film succeed commercially cannot be taken as proof that the director himself shares the film’s apparent moral or political stance. This issue lies at the heart of evaluating the methodologies of critics such as Judith M. Kass, whose account of Siegel as an auteur hinges, at least in part, on attempts to use the films as a basis for psychoanalysing their director.

The Beguiled

Communism versus McCarthyism and fascism versus documentary realism may have provided the two most long-running and heated controversies in academic, journalistic and fan-based accounts of Siegel’s work but they have, for the most part, been focalised around individual movies. The other main area of contention for critics has been one that is spread across a number of Siegel’s films, although it achieved increasing prominence through the 1960s and ’70s. This is the issue of misogyny. “Don Siegel hates women – and fears them,” wrote Karyn Kay in her review of The Beguiled. “In film after film he depicts females as manipulative and evil, plotting to destroy men” (29). If this issue came to the fore in response to a specific film, it also played a substantial role in several analyses of The Killers and Dirty Harry and started to appear regularly in career retrospectives as critics of the ’70s and onwards began to re-evaluate earlier films in the light of later works (30).

Some of the critics who identify a misogynistic strand in Siegel’s oeuvre have argued for it as a striking feature of his work. Judith Kass, who insists upon interpreting the films as a window into the director’s psyche, argues that he “appears to have used some of his movies to describe his fantasy life, especially some unresolved feelings about women,” although it is difficult to find compelling evidence to sustain such claims (31). Others have argued that Siegel’s depiction of women accords perfectly with more pervasive representations of gender in American fiction. Anthony Chase cites Leslie Fiedler’s argument that American writers “shy away from permitting in their fictions the presence of any fully-fledged, mature women, giving us instead monsters of virtue or bitchery, symbols of the rejection or fear of sexuality.” “Isn’t [Fiedler] perfectly describing the essential similarity between the most American of film genres,” asks Chase, “the Western and the gangster film, the war movie and the black cinema of the private eye?” (32) Indeed the whole plethora of thematic issues and structural polarities identified by critics as consummately Siegel not only reflect the time and place of their production but are often common narrative or genre building blocks, remarkable not because they are peculiar to Siegel but rather because they have been handled with exceptional proficiency.

Don Siegel has furnished auteur theorists with a lot of problems (33). Whilst thematic and often explicitly political issues have figured centrally in the critical responses to many of his films, he has seldom committed to moral or political positions and, when he has done so, there seems little consistency from film to film. Paul Smith has seen Siegel’s reluctance to argue for a ‘message’ in his films as being, in itself, a mark of the director’s individual distinction however. It can, he argues:

…help explain Siegel’s status for much of his career as a somewhat marginal and eccentric figure in Hollywood. That is, his undermining of the authorial stance, his concomitant refusal to stand up for the politics of ‘his’ film, and his stated determination to present a chunk of reality almost as a documentarist are all positions that work against the norms and conventions of the industry (34).

A majority of Siegel’s films can be seen to exhibit certain consistencies, such as a somewhat jaundiced view of humanity and its social structures, which extend beyond the necessities of genre. Yet the director’s greatest achievement has arguably lain less in the injection of ‘personality’ into his films than in the skilful creation of filmic vacuums into which are sucked the attitudes of viewers, critics, and even filmic collaborators. That Siegel’s auteur-status is perhaps less apparent than that of Hitchcock, Welles or Hawks, say, does not devalue his achievements in any way. Even the supporters of the once popular school of auteurism that elevates the ‘cult of personality’ above the work of other directors must surely agree with Alan Lovell’s assertion that Siegel has “transcended mere professionalism” (35). The consistent ability of Siegel’s best works to operate as superlative entertainment as well as to provoke debate decades after their production is a testament to his position as one of Hollywood cinema’s most interesting and accomplished directors.

Clint Eastwood and Don Siegel


Star in the Night (1945) short film

Hitler Lives
(1946) short film

The Verdict

Night unto Night

The Big Steal

No Time for Flowers

Duel at Silver Creek

Count the Hours

China Venture

Riot In Cell Block 11

Private Hell 36

An Annapolis Story

Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Crime in the Streets

A Spanish Affair

Baby Face Nelson

The Gun Runners

The Lineup (1958)

Edge of Eternity (1959) also associate producer

Hound Dog Man

Flaming Star

Hell is for Heroes

The Killers
(1964) also producer

The Hanged Man

Stranger on the Run


Coogan’s Bluff
(1969) also producer

Death of a Gunfighter (1969) credited as Alan Smithee. Siegel completed this film after the original director left.

Two Mules for Sister Sara

The Beguiled
(1971) also producer

Dirty Harry
(1971) also producer

Charley Varrick
(1973) also producer

The Black Windmill
(1974) also producer

The Shootist


Escape from Alcatraz
(1979) also producer

Rough Cut


Select Bibliography

John Baxter, “Dirty Harry” in Tom Pendergast and Sara Perdergast (eds.), International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers: Films, Detroit, St James’s Press, 2000.

Anthony Chase, “The Strange Romance of ‘Dirty Harry’ Callahan and Ann Mary Deacon”, Velvet Light Trap, no. 4, Spring 1972, pp. 2–7.

Richard Combs, “Less is More: Don Siegel from the Block to the Rock”, Sight and
, vol. 49, no. 2, Spring 1980, pp. 117–121.

Peter Howden, “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”, The Movie, vol. 4, chapter 39, p. 774.

Pauline Kael, “The Current Cinema: Saint Cop”, The New Yorker, 15 January 1972.

Stuart M. Kaminsky, Don Siegel: Director, New York, Curtis Books, 1974.

Judith M. Kass, “Don Siegel” in Stuart Rosenthal and Judith M. Kass, The Hollywood Professionals: Volume 4 – Tod Browning and Don Siegel, London and New York, Tantivy Press, 1975, pp. 67–203.

Karyn Kay, “The Beguiled: Gothic Misogyny”, Velvet Light Trap, no. 16, Autumn 1976, pp. 32–33.

Al LaValley (ed.), Invasion of the Body Snatchers: Don Siegel, Director, New Brunswick, Rutgers University Press, 1989.

Alan Lovell, “Don Siegel’s Criminal Record”, The Movie, vol. 7, chapter 77, pp. 1532-34

Alan Lovell, Don Siegel: American Cinema, London, BFI, 1975.

Kevin McCarthy & Ed Gorman (eds.), ‘They’re Here…’ Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Tribute, New York, Berkley Boulevard, 1999.

Don Siegel, A Siegel Film, London, Faber & Faber, 1993.

Alain Silver and Elizabeth Ward (eds.), Film Noir: An Encyclopedic Reference Guide, London, Bloomsbury, 1980, 1988.

Paul Smith, Clint Eastwood: A Cultural Production, Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, 1993.

John Russell Taylor, “Dirty Harry”, The Movie, vol. 7, Chapter 77, pp. 1526–27.

Andrew Tudor, “Don Siegel” in Tom Pendergast and Sara Perdergast (eds.), International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers: Directors, Detroit, St James’s Press, 2000.

Dana Wynter, “Wynter’s Tale”, The Movie, vol. 4, Chapter 39, p. 776.

Articles in Senses of Cinema

Dirty Harry by Rick Thompson

Total Eclipse of the Heart: Thinking through Technology by Niall Lucy

“What the Hell’s a Nun Doin’ Out Here?”: Budd Boetticher Revised in Two Mules For Sister Sara (Don Siegel, 1970) by Eloise Ross

Web Resources

Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Tale for Our Times
John W. Whitehead on Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Film Notes: Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Kevin Hagopian on Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Chartist: Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Peter Smith reviews the three film versions of Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

Cops Who Play By Their Own Rules
Jeremy Arnold reviews Madigan.

Dirty Harry
Tim Dirks’ extended review of Dirty Harry.


  1. Stuart M. Kaminsky, Don Siegel: Director, Curtis Books, New York, 1974, pp 24-50; Judith M. Kass, “Don Siegel” in Kass and Stuart Rosenthal, The Hollywood Professionals: Volume 4 – Tod Browning/ Don Siegel, Tantivy Press, London and New York, 1975, pp 202-203; Don Siegel, A Siegel Film, Faber & Faber, London, 1993, pp. 35-93.
  2. Kaminsky, 1974, p. 125.
  3. Cited in Kaminsky, 1974, p. 40.
  4. See, for instance, Kass, 1975, p. 67.
  5. Kaminsky, 1974, p. 137.
  6. Alan Lovell, Don Siegel: American Cinema, London, BFI, 1975, p. 33.
  7. Lovell, 1975, p. 32.
  8. Blake Lucas, “Private Hell 36” in Alain Silver and Elizabeth Ward (eds.), Film Noir: An Encyclopedic Reference Guide, London, Bloomsbury, 1980, 1988, p. 233.
  9. Richard Combs, “Less is More: Don Siegel From the Block to the Rock”, Sight and Sound, vol. 49, no. 2, Spring 1980, p. 118.
  10. Cited in Kaminsky, 1974, p. 79.
  11. Ibid.
  12. Eileen McGarry, “Dirty Harry”, in Silver & Ward, p. 92.
  13. Kass, p. 180.
  14. Lovell, 1975, p. 27; Mundy cited in Combs, p. 118.
  15. Cited in Kaminsky, 1974, p. 152.
  16. Siegel, p. 92.
  17. Peter Howden, “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”, The Movie, vol. 4, chapter 39, p. 774.
  18. Dana Wynter, “Wynter’s Tale”, The Movie, vol. 4, Chapter 39, p. 776.
  19. John McCarty, “An interview with Kevin McCarthy” in Kevin McCarthy and Ed Gorman (eds.),‘They’re Here…’ Invasion of the Body Snatchers: A Tribute, New York, Berkley Boulevard, 1999, pp. 252–3.
  20. Robin Morgan and George Perry, The Sunday Times 1000 Makers of the Cinema, London, Thames and Hudson, 1997, p. 160.
  21. Tracy Knight, “The Rorschach Plot of Invasion II: The Life and Death of Counterculture” in McCarthy and Gorman, p. 119.
  22. Pauline Kael, “The Current Cinema: Saint Cop”, The New Yorker, 15 January 1972.
  23. Garrett Epps cited in Kass, p. 147; Anthony Chase, “The Strange Romance of ‘Dirty Harry’ Callahan and Ann Mary Deacon”, Velvet Light Trap, no. 4, Spring 1972, p. 2.
  24. Paul Smith, Clint Eastwood: A Cultural Production, Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press, 1993, p. 97.
  25. Cited in Smith, p. 91.
  26. McGarry, p. 92.
  27. John Baxter, “Dirty Harry” in Tom Pendergast and Sara Perdergast (eds.), International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers: Films, Detroit: St James’s Press, 2000.
  28. Ibid.
  29. Karyn Kay, “The Beguiled: Gothic Misogyny”, Velvet Light Trap, no. 16, Autumn 1976, p. 32.
  30. See, for instance, Kay’s comparisons between the ensemble female cast of The Beguiled and Sheila [Angie Dickinson] in The Killers, Linny [Tisha Sterling] in Coogan’s Bluff, Sue [Carolyn Jones] in Baby Face Nelson and Becky [Dana Wynter]’s defection to ‘podism’ in Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Kay, pp. 32–3.
  31. Kass, p. 107.
  32. Chase, p. 4.
  33. A further exploration of these critical debates can be found in Combs, pp. 117–121.
  34. Smith, p. 96.
  35. Alan Lovell, “Don Siegel’s Criminal Record”, The Movie, vol. 7, Chapter 77, p. 1532.

About The Author

Deborah Allison is a London-based cinema programmer, and an associate research fellow at De Montfort University’s Cinema and Television History Research Centre. She is the author of The Cinema of Michael Winterbottom (Lexington Books, 2012) and co-author of The Phoenix Picturehouse: 100 Years of Oxford Cinema Memories (Picturehouse Publications, 2013).

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