The summit of film noir is Orson Welles' mesmerizing 1958 portrayal of guilt, betrayal and Walpurgisnacht in a hellish California border town--ruled by Hank Quinlan, the omniscient, chili-loving detective who frames his suspects. A baroque thriller, full of astonishing humor, wild flourishes and incandescent style, it is in some ways as great an achievement as "Citizen Kane" (which follows the Sunday 9:30 p.m. screening on AMC at 12:30 a.m.). With Welles (pictured, left) as Quinlan, Charlton Heston (pictured, right), Janet Leigh, Marlene Dietrich, Mercedes McCambridge, Dennis Weaver, Akim Tamiroff and Zsa Zsa Gabor (AMC Sunday at 2 and 9:30 p.m.).
Other four-star films airing this week:
Oliver! / Showtime, Sunday, noon and Friday, noon.
All the King's Men / A&E, early Sunday, 2 a.m.
8 1/2 / Showtime, early Monday, 4:45 a.m.
Death in Venice / Cinemax, Wednesday, 9:30 a.m.
Paper Moon / Bravo, Friday, 1 p.m.
Double Indemnity / AMC, Friday, 7 p.m.