1. "The collective sign of relief heaved on V-J Day ought to have inspired Hollywood to release a flood of "happily ever after" films. But some victors didn't feel too good about their spoils. They'd seen too much by then. Too much warfare, too much poverty, too much greed, all in the service of rapacious progress. A bundle of unfinished business lingered from the Depression — nagging questions about ingrained venality, mean human nature, and the way unchecked urban growth threw society dangerously out of whack. Writers and directors responded by delivering gritty, bitter dramas that slapped our romantic illusions in the face and put the boot to the throat of the smug bourgeoisie. Still, plenty of us took it — and liked it."
- Eddie Muller, Dark City: The Lost World of Film Noir