The Devil and Daniel Webster. William Dieterle’s bracingly dark 1941 screen version of Stephen Vincent Benét’s once-popular short story about a New England farmer who makes a Faustian bargain isn’t exactly forgotten–the Criterion Collection released a deluxe version in 2003–but it’s not nearly as well known as it ought to be. The cast, especially Walter Huston and Edward Arnold, is superb, and the atmospheric black-and-white cinematography borders on the miraculous. As for Bernard Herrmann’s score, which won him his only Oscar, it’s identical in quality to the music he wrote for Citizen Kane in the same year. If you missed this one on TCM the other day, pick up a copy of the DVD and revel in a first-class piece of work (TT).