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Great Noir Double Feature Tonight! (10th)


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Thanks for the heads-up, Hibi baby !

 

Double-feature Fritz Lang noir! Delicious !

 

People, if you haven't seen these two films, do so tonight.

Go to TCM. Go directly to TCM. Do not pass Go, do not collect two hundred dollars.

 

Seriously, both these films are great - although if I had to choose, I'd say that Scarlet Street is better.

Poor old Chris Cross.

 

Edit: I accidentally spelt "Fritz Lang" with a "d" instead of a "g". Just a typo, but a fortuitous one, because when you watch a Fritz Lang film, it's like you're in another land. A Fritz Land.

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Thanks for the heads-up, Hibi baby !

 

Double-feature Fritz Land noir! Delicious !

 

People, if you haven't seen these two films, do so tonight.

Go to TCM. Go directly to TCM. Do not pass Go, do not collect two hundred dollars.

 

Seriously, both these films are great - although if I had to choose, I'd say that Scarlet Street is better.

Poor old Chris Cross.

 

Absolutely! A dont miss evening. I've seen both films many times, but never in one evening. I think it's Bob's Picks night. Good choices!

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Woman in the Window and Scarlet Street back to back!

Interesting. Scarlet Street looks in a mirror and sees Woman In The Window?

 

I did a doubletake when I saw the promo for WITW, thought it was Scarlet Street.

 

Never saw the first, saw the latter ad nauseum.

 

Thanks for the heads up.

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Seriously, both these films are great - although if I had to choose, I'd say that Scarlet Street is better.

Poor old Chris Cross.

 

 

Interestingly, critics tend to give WOMAN IN THE WINDOW 3.5 to 4 stars and SCARLET STREET 3 stars-- but the user ratings on the IMDB currently put SCARLET STREET higher than WOMAN IN THE WINDOW.  I have a feeling more people have seen SCARLET STREET because of all the public domain prints of the film. In my opinion, they are both excellent Fritz Lang productions.

 

For folks who like this director and this lead actress, Joan Bennett worked with Lang previously on 20th Century Fox's MAN HUNT, and later on Universal's SECRET BEYOND THE DOOR.  All of these films are deserving of the label 'classic.'

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Interestingly, critics tend to give WOMAN IN THE WINDOW 3.5 to 4 stars and SCARLET STREET 3 stars-- but the user ratings on the IMDB currently put SCARLET STREET higher than WOMAN IN THE WINDOW.  I have a feeling more people have seen SCARLET STREET because of all the public domain prints of the film. In my opinion, they are both excellent Fritz Lang productions.

 

For folks who like this director and this lead actress, Joan Bennett worked with Lang previously on 20th Century Fox's MAN HUNT, and later on Universal's SECRET BEYOND THE DOOR.  All of these films are deserving of the label 'classic.'

Glad you've changed your mind. I think I remember you once posted that Fritz Lang, along with Billy Wilder and Steven Spielberg were overrated.

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Interestingly, critics tend to give WOMAN IN THE WINDOW 3.5 to 4 stars and SCARLET STREET 3 stars-- but the user ratings on the IMDB currently put SCARLET STREET higher than WOMAN IN THE WINDOW.  I have a feeling more people have seen SCARLET STREET because of all the public domain prints of the film. In my opinion, they are both excellent Fritz Lang productions.

 

For folks who like this director and this lead actress, Joan Bennett worked with Lang previously on 20th Century Fox's MAN HUNT, and later on Universal's SECRET BEYOND THE DOOR.  All of these films are deserving of the label 'classic.'

I thought Scarlet Street was a bit more regarded by critics. I like them both. Would be hard for me to choose. Window suffers a bit from its ending (which I wont reveal) Street's ending is more satisfying (not sure if that's the right word). Appropriate maybe.

 

 

I'm not sure I'd say Secret Beyond the Door is regarded as a classic (I've never seen it all the way through) It flopped and was panned by critics at the time, I dont think critical consensus has changed since then. It also marked the end of Lang's partnership with Joan Bennett and her husband Walter Wanger....

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I thought Scarlet Street was a bit more regarded by critics. I like them both. Would be hard for me to choose. Window suffers a bit from its ending (which I wont reveal) Street's ending is more satisfying (not sure if that's the right word). Appropriate maybe.

 

 

I'm not sure I'd say Secret Beyond the Door is regarded as a classic (I've never seen it all the way through) It flopped and was panned by critics at the time, I dont think critical consensus has changed since then. It also marked the end of Lang's partnership with Joan Bennett and her husband Walter Wanger....

SECRET BEYOND THE DOOR was one of those titles I had on VHS that I threw away when I moved recently. So I am hoping TCM gets around to re-airing it.  I liked it, though I think a lot of people felt Bennett and Redgrave lacked chemistry. The suspense builds nicely in the picture, and Anne Revere turns in a good supporting performance.

 

WOMAN IN THE WINDOW benefits from the presence of Raymond Massey who, unlike most of the main cast, does not return for the follow-up film.

 

And while we're on the subject of Fritz Lang noir-- I happen to love HOUSE BY THE RIVER, which he made later for Republic.  Man, is that a great film!  Louis Hayward is perfectly sinister, Lee Bowman is perfectly debonair, and Jane Wyatt is perfectly caught in between.  The picture is well acted and beautifully staged/photographed.  It is not something you would expect to come from Republic Studios.

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I realize I may have to turn in my Official Film Freak Registration card for admitting this, but I came across The Secret Beyond the Door on youtube and started watching it and quit about 45 minutes into it. It's a mess, and a dull mess at that. And Michael Redgrave doesn't seem to be particularly enthused about being in the film. Either that or he drank a quart of Robotussin before they shot every scene.

 

Window is okay.

 

Scarlet Street is one of the best films of the forties and Joan Bennett's performance in it is the best given by an actress in 1945. It is a film I can watch infinitely, but especially make it a point to see it on TCM because- even though Scarlet Street is in the Public Domain- TCM pretty much always shows a really clean copy of it with good sound (if I recall right.) Glad someone took the time to clean up such a deliciously dirty and prurient film.

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As far as I'm concerned this was the best double feature TCM's had for a long time. This is why I like movies. Both of these Lang offerings take me into another world, and it's a world I love.

 

Lots to say about both of them.

 

The Woman in the Window: Quite fun. I love that stuffy old club Eddie and his pals hang out in. In fact, every physical item in this movie must have been carefully thought out, you really notice the sets and art design and all that sort of thing.

Did anyone think, while watching this, about Double Indemnity? It came out the same year as WITW. What I thought of was, it's like Eddie G. in a role reversal of D.I. In the latter, he's investigating a man's death while the guy who caused that death watches him investigate. Eddie keeps sharing his ideas and theories with the murderer.

In Woman in the Window, Eddie's the murderer and his friend the detective keeps sharing his ideas and theories about a murder that Eddie's character committed, while Eddie watches.

 

Joan Bennett -so good, a really overlooked actress. ( I mean, overlooked in the sense that her name is unknown to many today.)

Dan Duryea ! Yeah, baby ! Love, love, watching Dan Duryea. What a deliciously unprincipled, self-serving character.

 

SPOILER: ok, many see the dream ending as wussy lame surrender to the censors. I thought this the first time I saw it, but tonight I kind of enjoyed it. 

 

Scarlet Street: This is one of my very favourite film noirs, which is saying something, because noir is my favourite genre, and I'm inclined to like them anyway. Better than TWITW, although it's obvious why the two are compared.

But Scarlet Street has a darkness and intensity to it that stays in your mind. I love everything about it, the sad sordid little story, the look of the film - oh those rain-slicked streets ! - the actors, and maybe most of all, the ending.

 

I know I just raved about Dan Duryea, but he outdoes himself in SS. Such a wonderful slimeball, so excessively mean and selfish and immoral. What is it about this guy that's so magnetic? I think it's partly his face, which is both handsome and kind of repellent at the same time. For sure it's his voice, which always has this snarky quality. And yet, I tend to find him hugely entertaining, I can't take my eyes off him when he's on-screen. 

But I usually don't find him scary, in fact, he often makes me laugh, just because he's so honestly bad, his character kind of revels in it. 

 

Edward G. is note perfect, as always. He infuses Chris' character with just the right degrees of loneliness, timidity, and desperation.

 

I did not agree with something Robert Osborne said in the intro - that most audiences think of the mother in Father of the Bride when they think of Joan Bennett. Not me. Why should FOTB be more well-known than SS? When I think of Joan Bennett, I think of her as the beautiful but cheap and love-struck floozie in Scarlet Street

It's pretty obvious that Kitty and Johnny are more or less living together. Much more obvious than usual for a post-Code movie. How did Lang and co. get away with this? I don't know, but I love it. They even show a double bed ! Upon which Kitty sprawls with a lazy erotic insouciance.

 

Anyway, Scarlet Street is a great film. And I would argue that it has one of the best endings ever, even for noir.  Talk about a haunted man ! 

Jeepers, I love you, Johnny...

 

Please people, tell me you watched this movie and were glad you did. It's because of this kind of evening that I love TCM.

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Joan Bennett in Scarlet Street brings to mind that wonderful Henry Higgins quote: "she's so delightfully low. So deliciously dirty!"

 

(As good as Eddie G is in this, it is a lost possibility that- had he lived- Leslie Howard might've consented to take on the role of Chris Cross to complete his "Scholar v. ****" trifecta which would include Pygmalion and Of Human Bondage. )

 

It's easy to not realize it now, but Bennett's Kitty is such a courageous performance; so many other actresses in 1945 who had established careers would- I dare say- never have consented to play such a role with all the stops pulled out; all the walls down. It- like Davis in Of Human Bondage- is a truly courageous performance because the actress playing her is not afraid of being disliked.

 

Had Bennett gotten a well-deserved Oscar nomination (she did not)- it would've likely caused an utter furor. But she deserved it. Se takes a HUGE risk and it pays off. It's a fearless performance that roars. It's a bit ironic though that instead, the Academy selected Joan Crawford for Mildred Pierce as Best Actress of 1945 (more for the fantastic comeback than anything she does in the film.) It's a shame that Mildred is disappointingly one of Crawford's most restrained, almost timid, performances, the Crawford of Rain and Flamingo Road and Grand Hotel surpasses her by miles.

 

ps- S L A T T E R N is banned? Seriously?

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Ok, sorry TB. You're right, Lorna, he was just bringing some info to our attention.

 

I guess I interpreted it as saying that The Woman in the Window is more popular than Scarlet Street. I find that hard to believe, but even if it's so, it doesn't change the fact that SS is the superior film.

But yeah, maybe I was a little overly-defensive.

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Joan Bennett in Scarlet Street brings to mind that wonderful Henry Higgins quote: "she's so delightfully low. So deliciously dirty!"

 

...

It's easy to not realize it now, but Bennett's Kitty is such a courageous performance; so many other actresses in 1945 who had established careers would- I dare say- never have consented to play such a role with all the stops pulled out; all the walls down. It- like Davis in Of Human Bondage- is a truly courageous performance because the actress playing her is not afraid of being disliked.

 

Had Bennett gotten a well-deserved Oscar nomination (she did not)- it would've likely caused an utter furor. But she deserved it. Se takes a HUGE risk and it pays off. It's a fearless performance that roars. ...

 

ps- S L A T T E R N is banned? Seriously?

 

Oh yeah, I love Joan Bennett's Kitty in SS. I enjoy the way she so honestly conveys her passion for the sleazeball Johnny. With very little actual, shall we say, contact with him, she really gets across her physical need for him. She's enthralled to him, and Bennett does a great job communicating this.

And she's so shamelessly lazy and self-centred. Yet, I still kind of like her. 

 

ps: this autocensor business is getting worse, I think. I agree, "****" (that's s l a t t e r n ) is a perfectly respectable word. We should continue this on my Autocensor thread. 

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Again, I'll repeat. SCARLET STREET was shown May 30 on TCM. People already most likely read about the film. Woman In The Window was NOT shown as recently. So therefore it would make sense that there would be more people checking the site for WITW. Most likely has nothing to do with prefering Woman In the Window to Scarlet Street

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Oh yeah, I love Joan Bennett's Kitty in SS. I enjoy the way she so honestly conveys her passion for the sleazeball Johnny. With very little actual, shall we say, contact with him, she really gets across her physical need for him. She's enthralled to him, and Bennett does a great job communicating this.

And she's so shamelessly lazy and self-centred. Yet, I still kind of like her. 

 

ps: this autocensor business is getting worse, I think. I agree, "****" (that's s l a t t e r n ) is a perfectly respectable word. We should continue this on my Autocensor thread. 

 

As far as I'm concerned this was the best double feature TCM's had for a long time. This is why I like movies. Both of these Lang offerings take me into another world, and it's a world I love.

 

Lots to say about both of them.

 

The Woman in the Window: Quite fun. I love that stuffy old club Eddie and his pals hang out in. In fact, every physical item in this movie must have been carefully thought out, you really notice the sets and art design and all that sort of thing.

Did anyone think, while watching this, about Double Indemnity? It came out the same year as WITW. What I thought of was, it's like Eddie G. in a role reversal of D.I. In the latter, he's investigating a man's death while the guy who caused that death watches him investigate. Eddie keeps sharing his ideas and theories with the murderer.

In Woman in the Window, Eddie's the murderer and his friend the detective keeps sharing his ideas and theories about a murder that Eddie's character committed, while Eddie watches.

 

Joan Bennett -so good, a really overlooked actress. ( I mean, overlooked in the sense that her name is unknown to many today.)

Dan Duryea ! Yeah, baby ! Love, love, watching Dan Duryea. What a deliciously unprincipled, self-serving character.

 

SPOILER: ok, many see the dream ending as wussy lame surrender to the censors. I thought this the first time I saw it, but tonight I kind of enjoyed it. 

 

Scarlet Street: This is one of my very favourite film noirs, which is saying something, because noir is my favourite genre, and I'm inclined to like them anyway. Better than TWITW, although it's obvious why the two are compared.

But Scarlet Street has a darkness and intensity to it that stays in your mind. I love everything about it, the sad sordid little story, the look of the film - oh those rain-slicked streets ! - the actors, and maybe most of all, the ending.

 

I know I just raved about Dan Duryea, but he outdoes himself in SS. Such a wonderful slimeball, so excessively mean and selfish and immoral. What is it about this guy that's so magnetic? I think it's partly his face, which is both handsome and kind of repellent at the same time. For sure it's his voice, which always has this snarky quality. And yet, I tend to find him hugely entertaining, I can't take my eyes off him when he's on-screen. 

But I usually don't find him scary, in fact, he often makes me laugh, just because he's so honestly bad, his character kind of revels in it. 

 

Edward G. is note perfect, as always. He infuses Chris' character with just the right degrees of loneliness, timidity, and desperation.

 

I did not agree with something Robert Osborne said in the intro - that most audiences think of the mother in Father of the Bride when they think of Joan Bennett. Not me. Why should FOTB be more well-known than SS? When I think of Joan Bennett, I think of her as the beautiful but cheap and love-struck floozie in Scarlet Street

It's pretty obvious that Kitty and Johnny are more or less living together. Much more obvious than usual for a post-Code movie. How did Lang and co. get away with this? I don't know, but I love it. They even show a double bed ! Upon which Kitty sprawls with a lazy erotic insouciance.

 

Anyway, Scarlet Street is a great film. And I would argue that it has one of the best endings ever, even for noir.  Talk about a haunted man ! 

Jeepers, I love you, Johnny...

 

Please people, tell me you watched this movie and were glad you did. It's because of this kind of evening that I love TCM.

Being overlooked back then is very diffferent from being unknown to most people today. Most actors from the '30s and '40s are unknown to most people today. Ronald Colman is one who was hardly overlooked back then, but today, the mention of his name would generate a "who?" from most people.

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Again, I'll repeat. SCARLET STREET was shown May 30 on TCM. People already most likely read about the film. Woman In The Window was NOT shown as recently. So therefore it would make sense that there would be more people checking the site for WITW. Most likely has nothing to do with prefering Woman In the Window to Scarlet Street

 

Yes, that explanation makes sense. Most likely more to do with people's familiarity with or lack of TWITW than any kind of preference for one or the other.

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Yes, that explanation makes sense. Most likely more to do with people's familiarity with or lack of TWITW than any kind of preference for one or the other.

 

OR, it could just be that a whole lot of people were planning a sudden trip to Amsterdam, and thought with the title of this movie, it might be a good reference to check out before hopin' on that airliner.

 

(...another possibilty to consider, ya know!) ;)

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What airliner? I'm Canadian, Dargo baby, I'm thinking maybe whatever airliner you're referring to does not fly in Canada. (I could be wrong, truth is, I do not fly very much. Unless I've had 3 martinis in a row.)

 

OH, I'm pretty sure both Air Canada AND KLM have non-stop service from Toronto to Amsterdam, MissW.

 

(...and to where THE RED LIGHT DISTRICT of Amsterdam features MANY a woman in various states of undress displaying their "wares" IN WINDOWS!!!) 

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OH, I'm pretty sure both Air Canada AND KLM have non-stop service from Toronto to Amsterdam, MissW.

 

(...and to where THE RED LIGHT DISTRICT of Amsterdam features MANY a woman in various states of undress displaying their "wares" IN WINDOWS!!!) 

Dargo,

 

We may need to create a special award for you, for best comic relief-- maybe a TCM Razzie. :)

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