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Should be like a boxing match.  Never thought of either actor as noir, especially William Holden.  It’s hard to think of Lee J Cobb as anybody but Judge Garth on The Virginian.  Not very Noir. 

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Cobb has a few noir titles to his name: Johnny O' Clock,  Call Northside 777, Boomerang, Thieves Highway,  and The Man Who Cheated Himself

Holden? Union Station, The Turning Point and Sunset  Blvd.

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1 hour ago, unwatchable said:

...or when a film is based upon a stage play. I happen to like Lee J. Cobb's performance in this film.

Yes, that is a double whammy. From what I recall, Lee  J. Cobb was fairly subdued in the role.

They didn't even have to administer a rabies  test. 

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I did wonder about this upcoming one-- I like both Lee J. Cobb and William Holden.   Lee J. Cobb was interesting in that noir, whose name escapes me, in which Jane Wyatt was uncharacteristically cast as a heartless vamp.  The final scene in that packs a punch.   Also liked him in "Miami Expose".

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4 hours ago, unwatchable said:

Yes. he didn't go all Twelve Angry Men in this one. 😛

He had  enough anger in that one for the other eleven jurors, though that was part of  the role he was playing.  

I like Cobb, even though he does go off the deep end on occasion.

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Oh, that's it, thank you MR. GORMAN.    The casting was wild in that--  not only is Jane Wyatt unwontedly slinking around, but John Dall, to me, is not exactly a 'natural' as Lee J. Cobb's brother!

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3 hours ago, Toto said:

I wish "Noir Alley" wasn't on so late.  Why not in prime time?

Toto,  switch it around, go to Saturday night church service and catch Noir Alley Sunday morning.  Always thought William Holden acts  “slow.”  Thought he acts slow in this one to begin, but he picks up speed considerably during the “the dream” interrogation by Cobb.  He wasn’t being William Holden, he seemed like another actor.  That was cool.  Eddie mentioned some friction between Holden and Cobb on set, so maybe that had something to do with it.   

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53 minutes ago, Sepiatone said:

Not sure what's meant by "slow" acting.  Talked slow, moved slow?  And was it out of his character's nature?

Sepiatone

I think the excuse of “the actor is playing a certain character so that absolves him of mediocre acting -  he is only portraying the character” doesn’t work.  As soon as we start making that mistake we start to “read” into things after the fact.  Movies are supposed to read into us.  Dargo taught me that.  I guess what I’m saying is William Holden (to me) is a drag.  He’s too too William Holden, but in this one he surprised me with the dream scene.  We just had a couple of performances by Gloria Grahame, admittedly I didn’t know of her work before, and she acts fast.  She is impressive.  Edmond O’Brien is another one who acts fast.  D.O.A. I never thought of as campy, maybe just the whistle at the convention hotel, but man does that film MOVE.  

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Third viewing for me of The Dark Past.  It's ok,  but will never be right up there in the pantheon of Great or even Pretty Good noirs.  And as some have observed,  it's more a "psychobabble" drama than a noir -- not that I get bogged down in labels.

I always like William Holden, so that's a plus in this film.   I also like Nina Foch.  For some reason,  I sometimes get her mixed up with Patricia Neal, even though they don't really look alike.  Something about them both being good actresses and attractive women, both were in some fine movies,  but never made it to "A List" Hollywood actresses -- maybe by choice.

I rarely enjoy filmed plays; you can always tell, they're so static.  Everything set in one room  ( or two, as in TDP.)  Maybe because I was already familiar with the story,  I paid attention to little details I hadn't noticed on my other viewings.

For  one thing,  I get a kick out of the set details,  things like that ceramic dog that's used as a bookend.  And for some reason I think it's kind of funny that despite the tension of the situation,  it's sort of cozy,  what with the chess game and the fire.  A cozy fire while the escaped convicts hold everyone prisoner.   They should have had home made soup and French bread to complete the scene.  But then, the people who could provide the comfort food were locked in the basement.

And  what's up with that?  How come the two servants were whisked away apart from everyone else?  Of course, to give them the opportunity to escape unnoticed...at least,  the stronger of the two did.  I don't think they needed to present the other servant as so hysterical and annoying. I think the "strong" servant was Kathryn Card.  The other servant,  the whiney one,  is not even credited on wiki, even though I have seen this actress many times, she was just doing what the script called her to do.  Anyway,  I just think it's funny that even the thugs were "classist" and separated the "help" from the rich people.   Upstairs Downstairs.

I do sometimes tire of all those "psychology" dramas so beloved by producers in the '40s and '50s.  It all seems so dated now,  and as others have mentioned,  they make for very talky films.   I also doubt that Holden's character,  even if not shot down by the police  ( as in Blind Alley)  would have been allowed to live and undergo psychological counselling -- he shot that warden in the back,  in cold blood, and I don't think claiming he imagined it was his father would have been an acceptable defence to a judge or jury.  

Too bad the kid was caught after he tried to escape...I was rooting for him.  But at least the cook had better luck.

Oh,  one other "detail" I observed...One of the female guests  ( Adele Jergens?) , the one who was flirting with another guest in front of her husband...how come she's dressed to the nines like that?  Black evening gown, high heels, and jewellery,  this in a country  "cottage" supposedly for a relaxing weekend playing chess and hunting  (  while,  maybe not her ).  The outfit seems so incongrous to the situation.  Oh well,  she did have to look good for the guy she was flirting with,  even though the script makes him look weaker than her husband - that whole thing was like a little subplot,   just a little extra something to think about.

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I don’t know why everybody is so confused.  D.O.A is in that group of films you can watch over and over.  There are quite a few.  We all have them.  

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33 minutes ago, Thompson said:

think the excuse of “the actor is playing a certain character so that absolves him of mediocre acting -  he is only portraying the character” doesn’t work.  As soon as we start making that mistake we start to “read” into things after the fact.

Read into what things.

We can't have "things" dawn on us after watching the movie?

34 minutes ago, Thompson said:

I guess what I’m saying is William Holden (to me) is a drag.  He’s too too William Holden

This is circular reasoning. The sky is blue because the sky is blue. It might be a good to be specific and say you just don't like his acting. To say that he simply slow is problematic because your meaning is not clear.  These are not words in the normal lexicon for describing actors.

35 minutes ago, Thompson said:

We just had a couple of performances by Gloria Grahame, admittedly I didn’t know of her work before, and she acts fast.  She is impressive.

So acting fast means you are impressive. To not be fast means you are unimpressive?

38 minutes ago, Thompson said:

Movies are supposed to read into us.  

Meaning ... what? We are to allow ourselves to be callously manipulated. So we can't read into the movie what we think we see? We are not allowed to read into the movie, curious. Boy, movies are no longer any fun.

***

Maybe William Holden (though lamentably too too William Holden) is a low-key sort of actor and I think he is. So therefore he a slow actor and therefore mediocre? And if so, uh-oh, we are going start reading into things after the fact. Yes? What things?

I am not attacking you, I feel that there is something vague about what you are saying and I am trying to understand what you're saying.

Does the word vitality have anything to do with this? Does fast mean vitality and does slow mean no vitality ?  If so, I am beginning to understand. Fast and slow are possibly not good words for this context. Maybe?

Maybe William Holden has no screen presents for you. No charisma. And so he is slow. Maybe?

If you of a mind speak of this. Talk to me as I were a child. Make it crystal clear what you mean.

 

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21 hours ago, Thompson said:

Should be like a boxing match.  Never thought of either actor as noir, especially William Holden.  It’s hard to think of Lee J Cobb as anybody but Judge Garth on The Virginian.  Not very Noir. 

You've never seen Sunset Blvd? Probably one of the best and  most famous noirs of all time. Doubt any actor could have been better than William Holden as the lead in Sunset Blvd.  Other noirs  Holden also starred in Turning Point and Union Station. I agree with Sepia and Laffite, your posts are very confusing.

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Well, the written word is not the ideal means of communication.; close, perhaps, but something is lost without face-to-face, instantaneous back and forth. I'm for taking it easy on Thompson. Sometimes, we can't get our point across. It's happened to everyone.

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16 hours ago, Vautrin said:

He had  enough anger in that one for the other eleven jurors, though that was part of  the role he was playing.  

I like Cobb, even though he does go off the deep end on occasion.

Cobb was casts in some odd character roles like this one in Left Hand of God:

Humphrey Bogart & Lee J. Cobb in "The Left Hand of God" 1955 Vintage Movie  Still | eBay

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9 minutes ago, unwatchable said:

Well, the written word is not the ideal means of communication.; close, perhaps, but something is lost without face-to-face, instantaneous back and forth. I'm for taking it easy on Thompson. Sometimes, we can't get our point across. It's happened to everyone.

I absolutely agree. However, the statement about not thinking of William Holden as a noir actor when his Oscar nominated performance in Sunset Blvd. was so wonderful, is at the very least, odd.

Of course we're all entitled to an opinion, mine is William Holden was a great actor and the comment about his acting being slow, just don't get that.

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Well, I’ll tell ya Lafitte, you don’t like rock-n-roll.  To me classical music is about the most boring music except for opera music that I can think of except Frank Sinatra, possibly the worst actor/singer to ever grace the screen.  What a wimp.  His daughter did a couple good songs.  I think you know what I am trying to say.  Your disdain for say Bob Dylan is absolutely legitimate, I can dig that, in many ways you are right.  But when I hear him sing on those early dirges I’m hypnotized as to how good that singing is.  So what I am after in a movie (and it is possible) is that certain something that you can never really explain, you Know It, but you can’t explain it, you get it and feel it but what makes it really special is beyond a vocabulary.

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1 hour ago, Thompson said:

Well, I’ll tell ya Lafitte, you don’t like rock-n-roll.  To me classical music is about the most boring music except for opera music that I can think of except Frank Sinatra, possibly the worst actor/singer to ever grace the screen.  What a wimp.  His daughter did a couple good songs.  I think you know what I am trying to say.  Your disdain for say Bob Dylan is absolutely legitimate, I can dig that, in many ways you are right.  But when I hear him sing on those early dirges I’m hypnotized as to how good that singing is.  So what I am after in a movie (and it is possible) is that certain something that you can never really explain, you Know It, but you can’t explain it, you get it and feel it but what makes it really special is beyond a vocabulary.

 Frank Sinatra the worst actor/singer????? Yikes! again, you've never seen his Oscar winning performance in From Here To Eternity or his Oscar nominated performance in The Man With The Golden Arm????  and I think Frank was a great singer. 

I'd recommend you seeing Sunset Blvd. for William Holden;s performance and From Here To Eternity and The Man With the Golden Arm for Frank's performances. 

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Third viewing for me of The Dark Past.  It's ok,  but will never be right up there in the pantheon of Great or even Pretty Good noirs.  And as some have observed,  it's more a "psychobabble" drama than a noir -- not that I get bogged down in labels.

I always like William Holden, so that's a plus in this film.   I also like Nina Foch.  For some reason,  I sometimes get her mixed up with Patricia Neal, even though they don't really look alike.  Something about them both being good actresses and attractive women, both were in some fine movies,  but never made it to "A List" Hollywood actresses -- maybe by choice.

I rarely enjoy filmed plays; you can always tell, they're so static.  Everything set in one room  ( or two, as in TDP.)  Maybe because I was already familiar with the story,  I paid attention to little details I hadn't noticed on my other viewings.

For  one thing,  I get a kick out of the set details,  things like that ceramic dog that's used as a bookend.  And for some reason I think it's kind of funny that despite the tension of the situation,  it's sort of cozy,  what with the chess game and the fire.  A cozy fire while the escaped convicts hold everyone prisoner.   They should have had home made soup and French bread to complete the scene.  But then, the people who could provide the comfort food were locked in the basement.

And  what's up with that?  How come the two servants were whisked away apart from everyone else?  Of course, to give them the opportunity to escape unnoticed...at least,  the stronger of the two did.  I don't think they needed to present the other servant as so hysterical and annoying. I think the "strong" servant was Kathryn Card.  The other servant,  the whiney one,  is not even credited on wiki, even though I have seen this actress many times, she was just doing what the script called her to do.  Anyway,  I just think it's funny that even the thugs were "classist" and separated the "help" from the rich people.   Upstairs Downstairs.

I do sometimes tire of all those "psychology" dramas so beloved by producers in the '40s and '50s.  It all seems so dated now,  and as others have mentioned,  they make for very talky films.   I also doubt that Holden's character,  even if not shot down by the police  ( as in Blind Alley)  would have been allowed to live and undergo psychological counselling -- he shot that warden in the back,  in cold blood, and I don't think claiming he imagined it was his father would have been an acceptable defence to a judge or jury.  

Too bad the kid was caught after he tried to escape...I was rooting for him.  But at least the cook had better luck.

Oh,  one other "detail" I observed...One of the female guests  ( Adele Jergens?) , the one who was flirting with another guest in front of her husband...how come she's dressed to the nines like that?  Black evening gown, high heels, and jewellery,  this in a country  "cottage" supposedly for a relaxing weekend playing chess and hunting  (  while,  maybe not her ).  The outfit seems so incongrous to the situation.  Oh well,  she did have to look good for the guy she was flirting with,  even though the script makes him look weaker than her husband - that whole thing was like a little subplot,   just a little extra something to think about.

 

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48 minutes ago, JamesJazGuitar said:

Cobb was casts in some odd character roles like this one in Left Hand of God:

Humphrey Bogart & Lee J. Cobb in "The Left Hand of God" 1955 Vintage Movie  Still | eBay

I believe he was in a slew of movies, so he did play a lot of different roles. But like many other actors he is remembered  for a general

screen  persona, which was that of the heated,  over the  top bombastic  guy. I think he  had  a line in Twelve Angry Men that  went

something like Angry, you bet I'm angry.  But was  that  ever true.

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Smokes a pipe. Listens to classical  music. Plays chess. Tweedy  suit. You are now an official Hollywood  intellectual.

At  first I was  thinking  What  the heck  is a psychiatrist  riding around  in a bus for?  Should have a Caddy or a Lincoln.

Then I  remembered he worked for the police department  so  that  explains  it. Holden  was  like the boring party  guest

who  never takes the hint  and  leaves. Cobb is the shrink who, using  his book of symbols, will analyze  Bill's rain and

umbrella with a hole in it  dream and make  it not very insightful or even that interesting, though he did manage to get in

the ole Oedipus  complex. Jah, you was in leib with your  mutti and vanted to have zexual intercurse mit her. I vood tell

you what zat  has  to do mit  your malformed fingerz but you vood not vant  to hear it. I doubt the today's head  doctors

use dream  analysis like they did back in the day, but it's red meat  for a Hollywood flick. The psychiatric shtick makes  this

one a  bit more interesting than other  hoods holding innocents hostage, but otherwise it's pretty average. Poor Grandma

Walton.  She survived  the  Great Depression only to be unnerved by Bill Holden's buzzcut. I think my favorite  line was

Hey, you could  have killed  me with those darts. Really?

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