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The Strange Love of Martha Ivers


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I had a chance to see this awkwardly titled noir this weekend. I don't think I'd ever seen it before, perhaps that lovely title scared me off. It's a nice little picture from 1946 starring barbara Stanwyck, Van Heflin and Kirk Douglas in his debut. Well made, entertaining picture (though the print I saw was very dark, probably a public domain copy). Barbara was incredible as always, she's quite the schemer. Has anyone else seen this recently?

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I haven't seen it lately. I think the thing that interested me the most about this one was that Kirk Douglas played such a weak character. I would classify his gangster in "Out of the Past" as weak as well. Certainly, this wasn't the snarling Kirk Douglas I usually think of. I guess he showed up in "Champion."

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"Strange Love" is a nice little film with great actors. Nice storyline and a good ending as well. All the players shift around their roles a lot in this film from stong to weak, etc.

 

I enjoy seeing Kirk play different character types. A lot of people just write him off as one demensional, but he was clearly a much deeper actor.

 

I'd also like to say that I personally think Van Heflin is a hugely underated actor who never gets credit for the many great roles he played (aside from that best supporting actor Oscar that is!).

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If you loved Barbara Stanwyk in "Martha Ivers," then see her in "The File on Themla Jordon," where she is at her conniving best, but much more sympathetic and tragic. This is the one where she puts out her lover's eye with a cigarette lighter as he's driving the car. Her hospital deathbed scene follows. Great Siodmak!

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siodmak,

You're right, that's a very entertaining picture. Barbara Stanwyck is great to watch in just about anything. I grew up watching her in the Big Valley, not really knowing all the great films she had in her filmography. What a wonderful revelation as an adult to discover all her old films.

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Lizabeth Scott is superb in TOO LATE FOR TEARS, as the femme fatale to end all femmes fatales. It's a very dark and very good little movie as well. That one is very easy to find. I got it in a film noir triple-movie set that also included HE WALKED BY NIGHT (great film also) and KANSAS CITY CONFIDENTIAL (also quite good).

 

She's good in a supporting role in I WALK ALONE, opposite Burt Lancaster. But TOO LATE FOR TEARS is the one to look for.

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> I think Barbara Stanwyck is one the most spectacular

> actresses of old Hollywood. She could do it all..film

> noir, mystery, drama, comedy.. you name it that lady

> could do it! I was also pleasantly surprised to find

> out the woman who played Victoria Barkley on "The Big

> Valley" was also a Hollywood legend.

 

She could also dance pretty well! Did you ever see her in Lady of Burlesque? B-)

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> Yes, she was good in that. About the only thing she

> couldn't do was sing, as in MAN WITH A CLOAK (1951).

 

I don't think I've seen that but I would be interested... although for that matter, if someone had cast her in a musical, she could always have been dubbed...

 

But that's OK, because the kind of movies that she did were usually the ones that were the best showcase for her talent. B-)

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