Brick pushes the limits of noir, because on the whole it takes place in a very bright daytime. Whilst the definition of what noir cinema can vary, one cannot completely escape the meaning of the actual word. And whilst there is a darkness at the heart of Brick, it exists in a very knowingly uncomfortable world of genre car crash.

Yes, Brick is the noir high school movie, but its high schoolness is limited to the vaguest of settings and the (supposed) age of its protagonists. In many ways it more resembles Bugsy Malone with real weapons – even if you are willing to accept that its protagonists are not really in their early twenties. Clearly filmed in a school closed for the summer, Brick relies on a language that Marlowe would have ditched for being too opaque. Stylised, stylish and cliched – it makes almost the perfect bit of two hour fun. Bugsy Malone is a good comparator, despite the lack of decent tunes. Both films recognise the fun of a genre work-out, and when you can’t understand what the characters here are saying, you can be pretty sure its all in the progression of that most cliched of noir plots (the dirty dame). Of course Malone has custard pies and Jodie Foster on its side, but Brick is still top fun, if you don’t take it seriously.