FilmScene to host award-winning crime novelists with ‘Noir at the Bar’ event

Film Noir
Get your fix of hard-boiled crime fiction this Saturday at FilmScene. — photo by Joost Assink

Noir at the Bar

FilmScene’s Scene 1 Theater — Saturday, Oct. 4 at 9 p.m.

Crime fiction novelists, movies and alcoholic beverages. That’s what FilmScene is offering this Saturday at 9 p.m. with its Iowa City Book Festival event “Noir at the Bar.”

Four award-winning authors — Scott Phillips, Jon McGoran, Craig McDonald and John Kenyon — will share their works with the audience amid drinks and conversation. Each author follows in the spirit of the noir genre, with stories largely centering around a cynical detective (often distracted by sexual motives) who operates as a sort of antihero. Violence, corruption, drugs and dark humor make for common themes.

While each author has his own impressive resume, Scott Phillips is the big draw. His novels The Ice Harvest, The Walkaway and Cottonwood are three of the most highly acclaimed crime novels of recent years, having received countless awards and nominations, including the California Book Award, the Edgar Allen Poe Award and the Crime Writer’s Association Gold Dagger Award.

Following the reading, Phillips will then show a free screening of the film adaptation of his novel, The Ice Harvest. The movie, directed by Harold Ramis and released in 2005, stars John Cusack and Billy Bob Thornton as a mob lawyer and crooked businessman, respectively, who steal over $2 million on Christmas Eve from the mob boss, played by Randy Quaid.

The readings will begin at 9 p.m. with the screening tentatively set for 10 p.m. The event is free admission, and first-come, first-served.

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