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misswonderly3

Heads Up! Nightmare Alley Wed.Night !

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MissW, I'm pretty sure Carlisle is at a different carny at the end, and it's a very convenient coincidence that Molly happens to be there (to rescue him, of course).

 

The carny manager at the film's beginning was played by James Flavin and at the end by Roy Roberts. I understand, though. If you've seen one seedy carny manager, you've seen 'em all.

 

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSW2RsGBM3Uf02AqxvP4Jv

 

James Flavin

 

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!

 

Roy Roberts

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Hibi write:

Since she wasnt a main character, maybe they overlooked that fact....

 

Hibi, I think that is the key. During the production code, the hero or heroine couldn't get away with anything, but anyone else could, apparently.

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Here's a few behind the scenes shots that I found for Nightmare Alley:

 

alley2.jpg

 

alley1.jpg

 

alley5.jpg

 

That's Edmund Goulding with his two stars

 

Here's a link to a writeup on the film at the Greenbriar website. MissW, you might be interested that the author of the website has the EXACT same interpretation of the film's ending as do you. You are not alone!

 

http://greenbriarpictureshows.blogspot.ca/2006/01/we-just-watched-nightmare-alley-let-us.html

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Maybe she got away with it because they were both crooks. He got the money by conning a rich guy. And, also, he did give the money to her. It?s not like she burglarized his apartment to steal the money.

 

Can anyone think of any other film where a crook is not punished for cheating another crook out of money or jewels?

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In your still photos, that movie camera seems to be turned on its side. I wonder why that is so?

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The scene in which Taylor Holmes, as crusty millionaire cynic Ezra Grindle breaks down in his garden, pleading for forgiveness from God and what he believes is the spirit of his long lost love ("What right do I have to ask for mercy when I've never shown mercy to anyone?" he cries) has never failed to touch me. It's a wonderful great moment of acting.

 

I agree, and what makes it even better for me is that I always associate Taylor Holmes with the slimiest characters imaginable. To name but two outstanding examples, the shyster mob lawyer in Kiss of Death, and as the murderous (and aptly named) Corpus P. Mills in Double Deal. I know he's played somewhat nobler characters in other films, but those are the two roles of his (other than Nightmare Alley ) that have always stayed with me.

 

And, of course, sharing this scene with him is the marvelous Helen Walker, the one character in the film who has outwitted him. Her cold blooded dismantling of his wavering confidence is chilling to behold. The con artist has been conned.

 

Indeed, and I think that Walker's overall performance is every bit as good as Power's, which is saying a lot.

 

It's that moment when you hear the siren of the police car approaching, Walker smoothly saying "What siren?" and a shaken Power now looks like he is starting to question his own mind, that you know this poor guy is a goner.

 

Exactly, even though the actual scene is a bit ambiguous. Is Power imagining the sirens, or are the sirens real, and he's just imagining that they're out looking for him? Either way, it's a sublime moment.

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I know I sound TOO cynical for humanity, but I kinda thought Joan Blondell's character was a little over the top in her grief over the loss of her guy who drank the wrong stuff on his final bender. I am not saying that a great love, a great passion, cannot exist. But, as was stated below in the thread about the friend who had lived in that milieu in the past with all the conning and the grifting, it's usually Me first, myself second, and me and myself last.

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I agree she was a little over the top but maybe for another even more cynical reason; the guy was already 75% dead, so her grief should of only been over the 25% that was still alive when he died.

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>I know I sound TOO cynical for humanity, but I kinda thought Joan Blondell's character was a little over the top in her grief over the loss of her guy who drank the wrong stuff on his final bender.

 

In many situations like that, in real life, the survivor is suddenly remembering her/his youth and happier days. The sick person who dies was one last real link to the memories of those days, who the survivor could discuss them with, but once the sick one is gone, many of the memories will begin to fade and there can be no more discussions about those days, no more discussions with someone who also remembered them, and this leaves a pall of gloom over the survivor who realizes that they are next in line to be the one who passes on. All sad stuff.

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I thought that Joan Blondell gave a wonderfully believable and sensual performance as Zeena in Nightmare Alley.

 

Zeena was about to get the money to send Pete to a sanitarium, you may recall. Not only was she trying to save his life by that act but also, I suspect, undo some of the guilt she felt over her past promiscuity and its large responsibility for Pete's alcoholism. To have him suddenly and inexplicably die at this very moment that might have been a turning point for him would, I think, have had a tremendous emotional impact upon her character, especially since she had known this man so long and during far better times.

 

In a film brimming with dark cynicism, Blondell's portrayal of anguish at this stunning moment seemed very real and honest to me. James, we definitely have different takes on this scene.

 

us%20Edmund%20Goulding%20Nightmare%20Alley%20DVD%20Review%20Tyrone%20Power%20542-r1.jpg

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I agree. And there was something a little unusual about this dark noir/tragedy film. Most of the main characters were fairly nice people, even though they were flawed, crooks, cheaters, drunks, etc. And they put up with a lot from their friends being drunks, cheats, etc. without getting too angry with them.

 

With some better breaks in life, several of them might have become better and more honest people.

 

Seems to me the most corrupt character was the mainstream "Doctor" played by Helen Walker. The carnival characters didn't seem to cheat each other.

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I didn't know either "Rawhide" or "Nightmare Alley" before the other night. I liked the former better overall -- and was scared witless when that little girl was around those horses' legs -- but certainly Power's performance in the latter was superb.

 

I also thought maybe there was more lurking under the script's surface towards the end of "Nightmare Alley" when the hotel employee asked Power's character if he'd like anything else. But maybe that's a 2013 mind overthinking a 1947 screenplay.

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By the way, I remember the term Geek from when I was a kid. The story I heard was that carnivals had people like that who were basically crazy and would do crazy things, such as kill live chickens in front of an audience.

 

I also heard that state laws eventually began to ban such acts for various legal reasons.

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Did anyone notice that Stanton wound up much like the Professor did in THE BLUE ANGEL, with the Professor playing the sad sick old clown. And in fact, the main cast of THE BLUE ANGEL was like a low-class group carnival of performers.

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Is there anyone here old enough to remember a real old-time carnival with all the side-show freak attractions?

 

I remember them from the late 1940s and early 1950s. Lots of really creepy people worked with the carnivals. Rumors went around among local rubes and **** that sometimes carnival people stole local kids, and parents were supposed to keep a tight grip on their kids so they wouldn't suddenly disappear while visiting a carnival at night. :)

 

Also, local police chiefs and sheriffs often hassled carnivals, mainly because of carnival pick-pockets, crooked midway gambling games, and too much nudity in the girlie show. However, some police officials hassled the carnivals so they (the cops) could get kick-backs. For example, some (a few in the old days) could be paid off with a couple of hundred dollars, and for more money than that, a side show could actually hire a couple of local off-duty policemen or sheriff's deputies to "police" the carnival grounds, with their job being to keep local citizens from complaining about being cheated with the crooked games. So the cops became part of the carnival, for a price.

 

Edited by: FredCDobbs on Oct 18, 2013 3:23 PM

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Tom you read way too much into my comments. I just agreed with someone else that in this ONE scene she was a LITTLE over the top.

 

I wasn't commenting on her entire perfomance in the film which I believe was very good.

 

Anyhow, you feel the emotions her character displayed were realistic. Maybe your right. I admit my take on this is a harsh one. I would of reacted with something to the effect of 'I'm surprised he made it this long' and I wouldn't of been surprised.

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In the '50s,there was a traveling carnival called the "Strates Shows"that made a yearly stop in Philly at a location near where I lived.Is anyone familiar with that name?

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> The carnival characters didn't seem to cheat each other.

 

With the telling exception of the film's chief protagonist, Stan Carlisle. He's a user. He seduces an admittedly willing Zeena so he can get the code that she had created with Pete. Once he has the code he's then on to seduce Molly, telling her that he's through with Zeena. If he hadn't been found out and forced into a marriage with Molly, there's no reason to believe that he wouldn't have dropped her once someone else came along that interested him.

 

Mike Mazurki's character acts like a protective big brother to Molly, without the film ever offering any explanation as to why. Just a big lug with a soft spot for a fresh face new to the carny business, I guess.

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>Tom you read way too much into my comments. I just agreed with someone else that in this ONE scene she was a LITTLE over the top.

 

Well, James, I hope you don't think I went a little over the top in my response to your comment. I just wanted to express my feelings about the same scene, that's all.

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Yes, I thought so. Otherwise, why wouldnt he have recognized him? Power wasnt THAT changed.........(the manager).

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LOL. They were too busy policing the leads, they overlooked other loose ends in the plot.

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I noticed that too this time around. That hotel employee's "anything else" question seemed really loaded. I'm sure back then most people didnt give it a thought.......

 

Allmost as if he was offering his "services"..........

 

Edited by: Hibi on Oct 22, 2013 1:51 PM

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