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The Avon
The Best of Independent Cinema
A Night of Noir: BLACK WIDOW (1954)

DIRECTED BY: Nunnally Johnson

STARRING: Ginger Rogers, Van Heflin, George Raft, Gene Tierney, Peggy Ann Garner, Reginald Gardiner



Post-film Q&A with film noir expert Michael Kovner

Peter Denver (Van Heflin) is a renowned Broadway producer attending a party—hosted by the viciously haughty and celebrated actress Lottie Marin (Ginger Rogers) and her quiet husband—when he meets Nancy Ordway. A seemingly naïve, 20-year-old, aspiring writer, Ordway hopes to make it big in New York. She convinces a reluctant Denver to let her use his apartment to work during the day, while his wife Iris (Gene Tierney) is away. Upon returning from a trip, the Denvers find Nancy hanging dead in their bathroom. Lt. Bruce, the detective assigned to the case, soon discovers that this apparent suicide was in fact a homicide and believes that Denver, quickly suspected of having an affair with Ordway, is the murderer. Denver evades arrest and seeks clues to discover the real murderer. The case becomes cluttered when he and Lt. Bruce independently realize that Ordway's dealings in New York have not been as innocent as her superficial personality.


Michael Kovner is a long-time Greenwich resident, having gone to Rye Country Day School before graduating from Trinity Pawling and then Lafayette College with a major in government. He did postgraduate work at Georgetown University in the Foreign Service School and at the University of Dijon in France. He also served as an officer in the U.S. Army. While he is an accomplished VP and Managing Director with the real estate firm Brown Harris Stevens in his professional life, his personal passion is cinema. An avid Avon supporter and lover of film noir. He can repeat lines in his sleep, and he has probably spent more time in the dark confines of cinemas than anywhere else. His fascination with film noir began at a young age, starting with THE MALTESE FALCON all the way up to PSYCHO, which he first saw at the Avon. He has hosted numerous film noir screenings in Greenwich and is an audience favorite at the Avon.




RUNNING TIME: 95 minutes










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