The Postman Rings Twice and Double Indemnity are terrific novels that became intriguing movies. But Cain was quoted as disliking being labeled as a hard-boiled author: “I make no conscious effort to be tough, or hard-boiled, or grim, or any of the things I am usually called.”
Cain also wrote several novels not considered crime fiction, such as Serenade.
True, there are no murder mysteries, guns or real crimes in Mildred Pierce, but the interlocking family drama is the stuff upon which many a crime fiction novel has been based. Evan Rachel Wood plays Veda, the treacherous daughter.
Each time a film or TV series is based on a novel there usually is a spike in the author’s work. It’s happening with Michael Connelly’s The Lincoln Lawyer. I hope that will happen for Cain.
And here’s another quote from Cain from the introduction of Double Indemnity: “I merely try to write as the character would write, and I never forget that the average man, from the fields, the streets, the bars, the offices, and even the gutters of his country, has acquired a vividness of speech that goes beyond anything I could invent.”