Max Noir

Born from an A-to-Z Challenge, what became Max Noir is now a feature script with a cast and crew attached and eager to go… We’re rally proud of what we were able to achieve with no-budget. Imagine what we could do with a little help.

Please check out and Share our Max Noir Teaser Trailer!

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/max-noir-film#/

2017-01-29 FAW Max Noir Take ItToTheMax wtitles

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A-to-Z Noir

“A down and out gumshoe, a couple of femme fatales and a rising tally of dead bodies. Detective Jack Murphy just wants to make a little dough but he’ll settle for getting through this challenge alive!”

So, after a rocky start, I’ve decided to take part in the A-to-Z Challenge 2014.

As my theme I’ll be doing a noir-style detective thriller. The attempt is to keep it short and sweet, paying homage to the classic noir elements of Chandler and Hammett – the hard boiled detective, the sultry femme fatales, the tough thugs and quick turns – while hopefully adding a little something of my own.

It’s a fast paced, shoot-from-the-hip world, maybe just right for an A-to-Z Challenge. Either way, Murphy and Company are about to find out…

Happy A-to-Z Challenge.

– HMB

What Women Want (or ‘The Mystery of the Riddle Inside an Enigma’)

Pandora’s Box

Without any historical or sociological proof, I would like to put forward the theory that the story of Pandora’s Box was written by a man (possibly recently married) who made the mistake of trying to understand his female companion’s wants and needs.

The fact is, the man who can tell you with certainty what a woman wants can most likely also tell you with certainty who shot Kennedy, as well as the eleven secret herbs and spices that make up the Colonel’s secret recipe.

Women will claim that they are more ‘complex’ than men, and you will find no argument here.

Simply start with an examination of the mere physical make-up: men have the majority of their erogenous zones organized into one locale, while women on the other hand have, what is it at last count, 103 or something (?) sprinkled liberally all over. And, as our research has also revealed, while one woman might enjoy and become aroused by something like light-nibbling on the hip, to another woman this is the equivalent to a medieval declaration of war.

There is little difference when it comes to the emotional aspect. It would be impossible to pin down exactly what women want, because they differ so widely – which is great – variety is the spice of life. Also it doesn’t help to ask, because, truth be told, they don’t necessarily know and are even likely to give you some very bad advice (consider the girl who grooms her man into something more “sensitive” and civilized and the leaves him for old Conan who she met at the gym). But where does that leave men in figuring women out?

Perhaps we can consider these starting guide-lines:

Start with Mother Nature.

Now here’s one lady who’s outsmarted Man since the dawn of time, so she’s definitely one to look to when trying to comprehend the Great Mystery which is Woman. As much as we may set ourselves aside from it, Men & Women are members of the animal kingdom. Our basic instincts are driven by primal biological needs – as a starting point. As with all animals it is a drive to reproduce[1]. Men are driven by the desire to spread their progeny. Women by the desire to bear children but also to rear and raise.

Okay, I hear you laughing from here, which is fine, laughter is good. Here is where you point out that you don’t want kids and you know many a woman who couldn’t begin to raise one. Well, that’s true and it’s all well and good, because Mother Nature is smarter than that. She didn’t leave those things to us. Our desire is raised by those factors whether our conscious mind is pondering them or not. Scientific studies have shown that the physical qualities that cause arousal are linked to procreation, and don’t fool yourself, many of the emotional draws are also primal.

So examining it from this point-of-view, what would a woman want?

Looks. Well if she’s going to choose to procreate with someone, she would probably pick someone she could stand the sight of for starters, so Yes, looks help, but there are other factors.

Health.  Because primal instinct wants to ensure the greatest likelihood of survival for the unborn tyke.

Security. Yes, money helps, it’s the new muscle. The family that won’t starve in the winter, no longer requires a mighty mammoth hunter in its midst, but rather someone who can afford to hire a bunch of mammoth hunters, pay for mammoth delivery to the cave and possibly some mammoth-chefs.

Personality. Here it gets more complicated, and this is less about mother nature than history and personal taste. The fact is you can start with some basic traits that women always say they find attractive, see if they make sense biologically and decide if it’s true (like the following).

Sense of Humor. Oh, how they love to say “sense of humor,” or a “man who can make me laugh.” But is it true? If this most luring of qualities to women indeed holds such awesome power, one might well wonder why Pee Wee Herman had to get his own rocks off in a seedy theatre… was he out of punch-lines? I’ve never seen Steven Wright make People Magazine’s list of sexiest men alive, you may well observe.

Truth be told, this is not a stand-alone attractor. One also has to understand what type of humor, and mainly ‘Why?’.

Why do women find a sense of humor attractive? A sense of humor’s simplest appeal has to do with smiling. Smiling actually causes a chemical release in the brain which provides one with a mild sense of euphoria, a pleasant feeling. If you are able to make a woman smile or laugh throughout the course of an evening they may not remember a specific joke you have told but they will associate you with that generally pleasant feeling that comes with smiling and laughter. This of course bodes well for the possibility of further encounters.

On a more complex level, a sense of humor has a positive social connotation, which is the suggestion that other people would generally like you because you can make them laugh. This matters to women who are more social creatures generally than men.

Confidence. Often ranked first, confidence is quite simply good salesmanship. People are more likely to buy a product from a salesman who believes in his product – “well he seems so certain and he’s given me no reason to doubt it”. There is also the social aspect – once again, confidence suggests someone who is prepared to be an alpha-male, it ties in to success, and success[2] is survival in this day and age.

dream_woman_vs_perfec_-man

So these are just some of the things to consider in the dating game. The thing is though, if you’re serious, you’re going to have to Pay Attention in order to determine just the right mix of ingredients as it varies from one woman to the next.

On the bright side, that in itself is something women want (just as men do) and that’s someone who will pay them some attention.

(To Be Continued…)


[1](i) While this may be controversial, we maintain that anything a Man does of value can be traced back to a desire to procreate. How else would Bill Gates have gotten some if he hadn’t become a multi-billionair? As for the likes of those spiritualists who have taken oaths of celibacy, they may be the exceptions, but take into account that the very goal they are attempting to achieve is to distance themselves from nature, what is ‘natural’, in an attempt to be closer to the ‘spiritual’. In this sense we can say that what they are doing is ‘un-natural’ (in a context that implies no negativity) but we are attempting to deal with human nature, i.e. what is natural.

(ii) The exception may be those Chinese Pandas… but who’s to say the she-Panda wasn’t just damn ugly by Panda standards, and things may have moved quicker if they hadn’t given the he-Panda the option to watch porn instead…

[2] Success can take on a variety of forms, but in male/female relationships there needs to be the suggestion of success within societal structures. Remember, we are biologically programmed and women generally want a provider, that is a man who CAN provide, even if she does not require being provided for, and she may never call him on it. As we ‘evolve’ the priority of these attributes may shift as it becomes more ingrained and accepted in society that women do not need men for support (or survival) in the classic sense. Our biological draws will change. But despite any arguments to the contrary these thing are still currently active biological draws. Evolution works slowly, and, despite what the logical or reasoning mind may tell us, we are still influenced greatly by primal drives, just as sub-conscious elements of our psychological make-up will also play a role in our development and behaviour and influence our likes and dislikes.

The Pool

In an attempt to commit to the blogging thing (as a means of keeping the writing muscles limber) I’ve decided to attempt one of the Daily Post’s Weekly Challenges ( http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/01/13/gonzo-writing-challenge/ ) … So here it is:

THE POOL

I arrive at the pool.

She lies stretched out like an offering on a white deckchair in the blazing sun – her blacked-out eyes,  long black hair, arms at her sides like something yet to be taken out of the box. Her olive skin is glistening. I wonder what sunblock she uses, what the SPF is. I wonder what SPF means and how many poor bastards had to sizzle to a crisp for them to figure out just the right formula. Or how many translucent pale bodies were driven mad in ghostly frustration before they realized that the formula was too much, that they were better off  using it as a cake frosting.

The pool is a mesmeric blue. My thoughts on sunscreen are thrust aside once again by how she lies there now, her body more like a lean meat cooking, a sleek sausage in a skillet. She has that slight glisten of bacon grease or maybe syrup. Syrup can be sexy. She looks covered in syrup. She is a syrup covered flapjack from one of those upper-scale breakfast houses…

I realize I haven’t had breakfast yet.

I take off my shirt and feel the grumble in my belly. It’s the price one pays,  I think, lowering myself all fish-belly pale into the cold blue. If I ate I’d have to wait two hours to swim. Those were the rules. Universal rules Moses brought down from The Mountain (where he must have swam in God’s Malibu villa) and then handed down from parent to parent, like how a crumb before dinner would spoil your appetite or how masturbation would send you blind.

I silently thank the Lord now for the tip – because nothing would be more embarrassing than cramping up here, sinking below these crystal chlorinated ripples to be found drowned in 3 feet 6 inches of water.  It just wouldn’t do. Not with a girl that beautiful sitting just a few feet away.

Stepping in, the water is so cold I feel my gravitational centre retreat. It knows better. I sink in and my system goes into some kind of shock. I can’t breathe for a second, but I pretend otherwise. Who needs to breathe on a beautiful day like this; a powdery sky overhead, sunlight glinting diamonds off of the water, blazing sun lashing my scalp while I freeze from the shoulders down, feet going numb, while sweat runs along my temples into my eyes, stinging them… My neck’s fine though. My neck’s happy as a clam.

I begin a slow breast stroke back and forth. The Girl doesn’t move. Maybe her eyes do, behind those big lenses, but I can’t tell. Maybe she’s blind. It’s romantic, I think. Blind, like my love is now, something pure for a stranger who can be anyone, anyone I can imagine. Because it’s all in my mind now. My body has no part in reacting to the girl on display. My body has bigger concerns – right now my body’s thinking about hypothermia, about survival. My body knows that a girl like that is no use to you if you’re stuck in a bed, running a fever while you’ve got chill, a shivering snot-filled mess. No, brother, if that’s your plan, may as well have a hearty breakfast and let it all end at the bottom of a shallow pool.

I go back and forth a few times. The view doesn’t change much. I’m like a goldfish, “Oh look, a horizon! … Oh look, a horizon!” Then I climb out slowly, casually, the oh so subtle tug of the swimsuit crotch which is scared of the temperature change and so clings to my privates for comfort. The Girl doesn’t seem to notice. She hasn’t moved the whole time. Maybe she’s dead, I think. Someone could have just left her here, murdered, neck snapped. We won’t know until she’s overdone, starts to cook in the sun, starts to burn. If the SPF is just right maybe she’ll incinerate, just burst into flame… Not a bad way to get away with murder.

Drying off is probably the best part. I feel invigorated. I should rub myself all over with a towel more often… in public… Well it’s probably the sun that makes the difference. I enjoy the fact that I can take full breaths again. I crave a cigarette. I dolls up, fixing my hair and donning my flipflops. I look back once more at the pool and it tries to seduce me back in, “Forget how cold I am… See how I glitter in the sun? … See how I sway so gently back and forth? … I could rock you like a baby…”

I won’t fall for that again. Not today anyway. I take a last glance at the beautiful corpse. Such a tragedy. I head inside thinking about breakfast.

Creation

In the beginning there was Nothing and then there was Something.

It seems strange to me that this is the thing on which both science and religion want to agree: there was nothing, and then there was a “big bang” or a God spoke the words saying, “Let there be light.” Either way, the silence was broken and it’s been havoc ever since.

But hold up a second. Can we define “Nothing”?

Because via one theory, there was a miniscule concentration of matter – all of the matter in the universe in fact, squeezed down to the size of a pin head – which violently exploded outwards (and who wouldn’t explode? talk about invasion of personal space), scattering and expanding to form the now (partially)known universe. But where did that pinhead universe come from? Isn’t that “something”?

The other theory is trickier. We’ve got Nothing and God. God just sitting around in Nothing, with nothing to do. And then God gets an idea; he’ll make man, and the world, etc. Only he can’t see a dang thing… Ok, I don’t know, there seems to me to be something going on in all that Nothing… In the end, there really is no escaping the notion of “God” for God is the ‘X’ in the whole equation of Something (S) springing from Nothing (N)… ie. (N+N) X = S.

Anyway, that’s besides the point, because what I was really meaning to get at is this: Sound…

Max Noir

Coming Back.

It’s been a while since I’ve written in this blog… But I’ve certainly been writing.

In 2014 I took part with in the #AtoZChallenge. With no idea going in, I got caught up in telling a fast and fun story that was as much a surprise to me as to the few who read it.

It’s now 2016 and that initial 26 Chapter story has the possibility of becoming a film series. Originally sticking to the conventions, I’ve now adapted the screenplay to my current homeland of Trinidad and, with the help of some great people we’ve actually filmed a Teaser Episode of: Max Noir.

Here’s our Facebook Page for taste of more to come:

https://www.facebook.com/MaxNoirFilm/?notif_t=page_fan&notif_id=1478100870636108

Coming Soon!

Alpha Dog

Chapter 1

Alcohol.

It always ended up here and here’s where things often began as well, sitting in a dimly lit bar with a broken heart, empty pockets and relying on the generosity of Sal, the bartender, which was the equivalent to really having no prospects at all. It was a never ending cycle and each come-around the jobs got a little smaller and the loop a little tighter so that, geometrically speaking, I was in a downward spiral of a thing that barely deserved the title of: “My Life.”

I was strongly aware of the fact of my decline, sprawled there, lapping at my whiskey. I had no illusions of ever returning to the top of my game. I brought the dirty glass to my lips and felt a couple of hot drops slip by the rim, twisting down the sandpaper of my chin. It was soaking into my tie, while I mourned the loss.

Just then the doors swung open and the beast that was Alvin Walter strode in. He came right up to me, the full brick building of him and leaned in close so that the sour of his sweat almost drowned out the sour of my whiskey.

Almost.

Determination is a hell of a thing and I scrounged up just enough of it to avoid eye contact with Alvin and keep focus intently on my drink. Alvin was waiting, but the reek of him was demanding attention and he kept leaning in closer until his heavy breathing was drying my shirt collar and sending ripples over the whiskey.

“Do you mind?” I eventually told him, “I get enough trouble keeping from spilling when I’m sober – far less for working rough seas in close quarters.”

It was a mistake. I had acknowledged the dogs presence and his fist came down heavy on the bar in front of me. We all jumped; me, Sal, the ashtrays, the bottles. The pretzel bowl even threw up a bit.

Alvin barked from his lantern jaw, “You owe me money, Murphy!”

It was true, I couldn’t argue with him. I owed him five large, and he was welcomed to try to take it out of my hide. Only I was pretty sure my hide didn’t have it. He could take my life, but my life wasn’t worth half of it, and the way things were now, he might even be doing me a favour. Then I’d owe him again, even more. As a friend and an honest man I couldn’t ask him to do me any more favours, so it was best we just left things as they were for now.

I told him as much, but I don’t think he followed my logic and he grabbed me by the tie. “You have til Monday to get the money, Murphy,” he said through big square teeth and then he shoved me back and stormed out.

It could have been worse, I decided, though I wasn’t too cognisant of how. I waited a respectable minute then gathered my stuff to head back to the office, but not before I’d finished my drink.

Bombshells

film_noir_by_glueckauf 2

Chapter 2

Blondes. They always spelled trouble.

I could tell the one standing in the middle of my office was no different; with those bored baby blues and the way she couldn’t move from window, to desk, and finally to chair, without first making sure her hips got a good look around.

I had been surprised to find her here at this hour and could only guess that my ever-reliable assistant had let her in before quitting the scene. She had that typical blonde air about her; an air of entitlement. It was an attitude that just because she was a blonde, with a gorgeous figure and Tinseltown looks, and I was a man, that God had put me here to serve her. She would learn soon enough that that assumption didn’t hold true everywhere.

Luckily for her though, it held true here.

Between the booze in my head and the loneliness huddled around it, I was ready to do my best to make her comfortable. I tripped over myself to pull the chair for her and fumbled her a cigarette, then dropped my lighter. This last at least afforded  me opportunity to discreetly slide my eyes the full length of her. It was a roller coaster.

“Mr. Murphy,” she said, with false innocence, “I have a job for you.”

Now dangerous things always come in threes; there was Alvin in the bar downstairs and I was considering the blonde already as being detrimental to my health. I could only assume that the job would be the coup de grace.

“It’s my friend,” she began and she got all uneasy, this time for real. Something to do with the word “friend,” it seemed to have some special implications in this case. It spooked her.

“Anything you tell me is confidential,” I assured her. “Ms…?”

She didn’t fill in the blank.

“My friend… A man I’ve been seeing. He’s gone missing, Mr. Murphy.”

“Men go missing all the time, Ms…” She left me hanging again. “What makes you think you need a private dick?”

“This… man,” she said cautiously, “he was supposed to meet me. He never showed up.” She took quick short tugs at the cigarette. “Mr. Murphy, I think his wife may have… well I think she murdered him!”

Cat’s Pajamas

Kim-Novak-and-Pye3 copyChapter 3

Customers. In most businesses you needed them.

The P.I. business is no different. But every now and then there was the feeling you’d be better off without one.

The blonde sending up smoke signals in my office was a case in point. She struck me as too wise to truly believe that a man who could stray from his wife couldn’t also stray from his mistress. She was nervous about something too, and I wasn’t convinced that it was concern for her illicit lover’s well-being. She was holding something back.

Still, my encounter earlier with Alvin reminded me that I couldn’t be too picky. So I had agreed to take her case, once she flashed the requisite dough and agreed to cover expenses. I did insist on getting her name first though.

“Thank you, Mr. Murphy. Delilah Ambrosia. Thank you so much.” She gave me a screen-test worthy smile of gratitude while pumping my hand. “And you will be discreet won’t you?”

“As discreet as an angel.”

I got some more details and sent her on her way.

The guy she was looking for shouldn’t have been too hard to find. He was a big shot by the name of Lionel Tucker. Lionel owned a few night clubs. Some fine dining types. As well as a few not-so-fine dining clubs, where the dancing girls were as friendly as you could afford. He was a slick player and I had seen him around but always at a distance. Lionel Tucker was a cool cat, one of those guys who walked around without touching the sidewalk. But in my experience, guys that high often had a finger in the gutter. There were rumours of mob involvement and various rackets. Still he got to sleep in a big old house at night, with a pretty wife, wearing matching pajamas, and apparently he got to go home with the likes of Delilah Ambrosia too. I suppose you couldn’t blame a guy, but didn’t mean you had to like him.

Luckily for me, you didn’t have to like a guy to find him either. It was a healthy paycheck and I didn’t mind the excuse of a few more meetings with Ms. Ambrosia, even if it was just to better suss out her angle. I’d do some digging first thing in the morning, just as soon as I’d had a shower and got some shut eye.

But first maybe one more drink.