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Christmas Noir

Kiss Me Deadly (1955)

In the opening sequence of Robert Aldrich’s Kiss Me Deadly (1955), on Mike Hammer’s  car radio after picking up the panting Christina, the radio announcer introduces then plays the Nat King Cole recording, Rather Have the Blues:

The night is mighty chilly, and conversation seems pretty silly
I feel so mean and wrought, I’d rather have the blues than what I’ve got.
The room is dark and gloomy, you don’t know what you’re doing to me
The way it has got me caught, I’d rather have the blues than what I’ve got.

All night, I walk the city, watching the people go by.
I try to sing a little ditty, but all that comes out is a sigh.
The street looks very frightening, the rain begins and then comes lightning.
It seems love’s gone to pot, I’d rather have the blues than what I’ve got…


  1. kilgortraut

    “kiss me deadly” is maybe the most influentual noir, “southland tales” has really cool references to it, not to mention pulp fiction

    P.S. thank you for beautiful posts about noirs from different cities, Tony! really great job!

  2. Thanks kilgortraut! Glad to hear you enjoyed the Noir Cities series.

  3. The noir cities series was also one of my own favorite features here. Love the lyrics to I’D RATHER HAVE THE BLUES!

  4. Tony,
    Your Christmas Noir was a perfect gift!
    I’ve enjoyed your lucid observations on the Surrealist factor of Kiss Me Deadly, and on Mike Hammer’s being a nuanced portrayal.
    Now that song!
    I’d like to send you a gift of my book, titled–yup–Rather Have the Blues, The Novels of Paul Auster, The Films of Jacques Demy.
    We have a lot to talk about.

  5. Thanks Jim. Great to have your comments. Your book sounds mighty interesting!

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