Belmondo wrote:chamucamel wrote:I watched Double Indemnity for the first time. Prepare for more blasphemy, Molly. Definitely a good film, though I was not blown away by it as many seem to have been. My main problem is Barbara Stanwyk. People always refer to her performance as that of the definitive femme fatale. Frankly, I didn't find the character all that interesting. Wilder's direction is fantastic, though, and the script is great. Tons of atmosphere. Still, I'd pick Out of the Past or The Maltese Falcon over this.
OUT OF THE PAST is one of my favorite noirs and I'll never figure out why Jane Greer didn't become a big star.
However. I do think DOUBLE INDEMNITY works better as a film noir than does MALTESE FALCON. Even though I don't really agree with it, I remember hearing a theory that Billy Wilder began film noir in 1944 with DOUBLE INDEMNITY and ended it in 1950 with SUNSET BOULEVARD.
hey i like Double Indemnity and it's in my top 10 noirs but it's not sacred.
The beginning of noir is spotty...i don't consider Maltese Falcon as true noir, Spade isn't a tormented character making bad decisions, he's a regular guy who is slightly corrupt who find out just where his line in the sand is.There are plenty of noirs before Double Indemnity - Laura, This gun for Hire, etc...the oldest one in my collection is Von Sternburgs' The Shanghai Gesture (1941) though an argument could be made that that film colmpletes the throughline between German expressionism and Noir. I think the most reasonable benchmark for the end of the noir period was Kiss Me Deadly (1955) though just to be contrary i would say Touch of Evil (1958) as the point where we came full circle on noir , basically the snake was eating it's tail by then.