A private eye escapes his past to run a gas station in a small town, but his past catches up with him. Now he must return to the big city world of danger, corruption, double crosses and duplicitous dames.
Screenwriter Dixon Steele, faced with the odious task of scripting a trashy bestseller, has hat-check girl Mildred Atkinson tell him the story in her own words. Later that night, Mildred is murdered and Steele is a prime suspect; his record of belligerence when angry and his macabre sense of humor tell against him. Fortunately, lovely neighbor Laurel Gray gives him an alibi. Laurel proves to be just what Steele needed, and their friendship ripens into love. Will suspicion, doubt, and Steele's inner demons come between them?Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Film noir is a part of cinema that has been sorely missed since it's decline in the sixties, but it's always nice to view a classic from the era; and this film is one of the best of the genre that I've seen. While many film noir's focus on crime only, this one fuses crime with romance and the result is a film that is both thrilling and touching. The film also seems keen to give a commentary on Hollywood, with it's comments on the sort of people that live there along with criticisms of certain methods. The film is very pessimistic, which is a part of the film noir tradition and the pessimistic outlook of the movie blends excellently with the stylish black and white cinematography. This film marks a different sort of role for the great Humphrey Bogart as well, as it shows him in a more vulnerable, and more importantly darker, role than what we are used to seeing him portray. The plot includes mystery and suspense, and it follows Bogart as the girl that he invited to his apartment is found dead.
The story of In a Lonely Place really picks up when Bogart comes into contact with his neighbour, a mysterious young woman whom he promptly falls in love with. This romance forms the backbone of this dark movie, but even though the romance is usually a positive thing; director Nicholas Ray even manages to keep this aspect of the story firmly in the shadows. The film is a great example of professionalism throughout, with the direction, screenplay and acting all being flawless. It's nice to see an actor of Bogart's immense talent in this sort of role, as it really allows him to put his back into it and the result is a fine performance from one of the greatest actor's of all time, which is a treat to watch. The plot is full of criticisms of Hollywood in the 50's, and this will be of interest to film fans as this was an important period of time for movies. On the whole, this movie is a fascinating piece of cinema. It is captivating from the moment it starts and you will be drawn to it all the way though. My only slight criticism is that it could have spent a little more time on the mystery side of it's plot, and a little less on the romance; but that's a small criticism. Otherwise, this is an excellent piece of cinema.
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