Archives for posts with tag: femme fatale

strange love of martha ivers posterNoir prescient of Dynasty – complete with a repeatedly hazardous grand staircase.

Lewis Milestone’s 1946 film boasts a slightly puffy class-based soap opera middle bookended by some terrific noir set pieces at the outset and the finale.

The script by Robert Rossen suggests an innate corruption in inherited wealth and capitalistic ambition by contrasting its adolescent characters to their adult counterparts, primarily the titular Martha Ivers, who first appears as a willful runaway (a perfectly cast Janis Wilson, who matches Barbara Stanwyck in not only in appearance, but also captures her unyielding countenance and anxious interior). Stanwyck closes out the same character as a duplicitous, treacherous industrial magnate and adulteress with just a sad whisper (literally, in her dying breath) of the fresh, headstrong teenager we’d met in the opening. She has rotted, not quite to the core, and her corruption, which bleeds into Read the rest of this entry »

Please Murder Me Lobby Card

PLEASEMURDERMEA tight noir that moves its three principals briskly and efficiently through their paces right to their respective dooms, Please Murder Me offers Raymond Burr – practically auditioning for Perry Mason as a defense attorney – as the dupe and Angela Lansbury as the matronly but adulterous wife and femme fatale. Both performances register as Read the rest of this entry »

Mitsuko madness in Manji.

Mitsuko madness in Manji.

Oh that Mitsuko! If you like your lovers constantly conniving and horrifyingly manipulative, you’ll love Mitsuko. I won’t spoil any of her surprises, but she doesn’t disappoint! The storyline is sort of like a Japanese Peyton Place gone berserk, centered Read the rest of this entry »