Richard Brooks, a director, producer and screenwriter whose films included "The Blackboard Jungle," "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" and "Looking for Mr. Goodbar," died Wednesday at his home in Beverly Hills. He was 79. He died of congestive heart failure, his physician, Dr. Leonard Schwartzman, said. Mr. Brooks was known for hard-hitting dramatic films that sometimes addressed social themes, and for his skillful adaptation of literary material for the screen. The film that established Mr. Brooks as a directing talent was "The Blackboard Jungle" (1955), a powerful drama about violence in an American high school. The screenplay, which he co-wrote, was nominated for an Academy Award. Two years later, he directed "Deadline U.S.A.," a taut drama starring Humphrey Bogart.