I did a blog post on this called The Five Essentials of Noir. Whether you read it or not, I'd like to hear your definition. Jack Bludis, an author on this site, said it best in terms of the difference between the main characters in hardboiled and noir. "Hardboiled = tough, noir = screwed."

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Whatever the "correct" definition of NOIR - an excellent noir movie is "LA Confidential".
"Hardboiled = tough, noir = screwed."

They can also be tough and screwed in hardboiled noir. ;)

I guess one way to put it is that noir is all about fate, and that hardboiled is all about trying to control fate through action. Characters in both can still be doomed, but the hardboiled ones will go down swinging.

That's how I see it.
Ahhh, but then you have to go on with the blades thru the heart and lungs;

They got a name for the winners in the world
I want a name when I lose
They call Alabama the Crimson Tide
Call me Deacon Blues

I cried when I wrote this song
Sue me if I play too long
This brother is free
I'll be what I want to be

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