It turned out I was completely wrong about all my initial feelings of Laura. As the flashbacks are played out and we learn more about the characters, they become more…
Otto Preminger's "Laura" is an engaging murder mystery whose gender politics help it make compelling social commentary. That commentary never bubbles clearly to the top, however, creating an interesting subtext beneath the noir tropes at work in Preminger's gripping and satisfying drama.
Zanuck, with whom Preminger previously had clashed, returned to the studio and was angered to discover Goetz had rehired his nemesis. In retaliation, he announced Preminger could produce but not direct Laura and assigned him to helm In the Meantime, Darling, instead. Several directors, including Lewis Milestone, were offered and rejected Laura until Rouben Mamoulian finally agreed to direct.
Less a crime film than a study in levels of obsession, Laura is one of those classic works that leave their subject matter behind and live on the strength of their seductive style.
Twilight Time honors another key American noir with a beautiful transfer that’s complemented by an affectionate and informed commentary.
Preminger initially experienced resistance from his cast, who had been led to believe Preminger was unhappy with their work by the departing Mamoulian. "Once we got used to Otto, we had a pretty easy time," Vincent Price recalled in a July 1989 interview. Filming was completed on June 29, slightly over budget but within the projected timetable.
When a dame gets killed, she doesn't worry about how she looks.
Um resumo do mérito de Preminger pode ser feito ao constatar como ele consegue criar um encantamento geral em Laura antes mesmo dela sair do quadro. Filmaço!
And he is egotistically pleased and flattered to be considered one of the murder suspects on the list: "To have overlooked me would have been a pointed insult." As the vain Lydecker finishes dressing in his apartment, he gives telling glances toward the young detective, and appears to have gay affects [typical of films in the 1930's-1950's]. As he knots his tie in a mirror, Lydecker taunts McPherson's investigation with his own innocence:
In 1993 Fox Records released a 27-minute suite of Raksin's score on an album paired with Bernard Herrmann's score for Jane Eyre. In 2013 Kritzerland released the complete Raksin score along with test demos and the suite from the original album as bonus tracks.
I don't use a pen. I write with a goose quill dipped in venom.....I'll neither consider, endorse, or use the Wallace pen. I hate pens. If your employers wish me to publish that statement in my column, you may tell them that I shall be delighted to oblige.
Preminger deals in facades, with how perception cheats us, right down to the ideal image of Laura as a portrait. (Cinémathèque Annotations on Film)
"My mother always listened sympathetically to my dreams of a career. Men taught me another recipe."
Laura, who works for an advertising firm as a designer and has an enterprising, ambitious and independent spirit, wishes to have him endorse a fountain pen her ad agency is promoting - her career rests upon his signature. But Lydecker arrogantly ridicules and snubs her. He refuses to endorse her ad, and turns her away:
Dana Andrews stars as a detective investigating the murder of Gene Tierney's Laura. Laura, the object of affection of two different men, soon becomes the object the detective's affection as well; though, he only knows her through her portrait and the stories told by those who knew her. The narrative moves down a twisty path, revealing truths that make the story memorable.
A look at this year's competition for Best Actress.
Ah, film noir. If you are a fan, this film is a pure delight, winner of the Oscar for Best Cinematography, Black & White and nominated for four additional Academy Awards, including Best Screenplay and Art Direction. Otto Preminger was shortlisted for the Best Director Oscar, while Clifton Webb was named among the nominees for Best Supporting Actor. It's a case study in the making a masterful monochromatic mystery.
Under the front-and-center detective tale, lurks the story of a woman who lives, perhaps even dies,…
The supporting cast is excellent as well- Price (in one of the best roles of his career) is great as the…
Laura (Gene Tierney) is dead. Shot in the face with a shotgun. Detective McPherson (Dana Andrews) is on the case, and he's…
The acerbic critic/writer is naked - reclining in his bath water at one end of his gigantic marble bathtub. A swing-away marble shelf or platform positioned across the marble sides of the tub holds his typewriter and hides his nudity. Caustically, Lydecker describes the murder of his protege Laura Hunt (on Friday night) and his earlier statement to police on Saturday morning:
Laura was also adapted for a television production produced by David Susskind, aired on January 24, 1968, starring Lee Radziwill in Gene Tierney's part. Sanders returned in Clifton Webb's role, and Stack in Dana Andrews's. The show was taped in London and the teleplay was written by Truman Capote. It met with unanimous negative reactions, which was attributed to Radziwill's poor acting.
A psychopathic criminal with a mother complex makes a daring break from prison and leads his old gang in a chemical plant payroll heist. Shortly after the plan takes place, events take a crazy turn
Young woman, either you have been raised in some incredibly rustic community where good manners are unknown or you suffer from the common feminine delusion that the mere fact of being a woman exempts you from the rules of civilized conduct, or possibly both.
McPherson: You said Harrington was rubbed out with a shotgun loaded with buckshot, the way Laura Hunt was murdered, the night before last. Lydecker: Did I? McPherson: Yeah. But he was really killed with a sash weight. Lydecker: How ordinary. My version was obviously superior. I never bother with details, you know. McPherson: I do.
I've seen Otto Preminger's “Laura” three or four times, but the identity of the murderer doesn't spring quickly to mind. That's not because the guilty person is forgettable but because the identity is so arbitrary: It is notnecessarythat the murderer be the murderer. Three or four other characters would have done as well, and indeed if it were not for Walter Winchell we would have another ending altogether. More about that later.
An odd movie. Edgar G. Ulmer's "Detour" with a budget, but so much more. Unsettling, campy, tedious, bizarrely paced, shocking in it's psychological depth and yet confounding as to it's perspective. There are many movies at play in "Laura", one half in opposition to the other as to the film's direction, but it achieves a charm and intoxicating aftertaste that leaves it lingering in the memory after a more perfect movie has been long forgotten.
In 1999, Laura was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
Lydecker belongs to the elite class of high-society critics who inhabit the world of venomous wit and high-brow intellect:
He first interviews charismatic newspaper columnist Waldo Lydecker (Clifton Webb), an imperious, effete dandy, who relates how he met Laura and became her mentor. She had become his platonic friend and steady companion and he used his considerable fame, influence, and connections to advance her career.
Vera Caspary Jay Dratler Samuel Hoffenstein Elizabeth Reinhardt Ring Lardner, Jr.
Blown away. I can't believe that this movie exists and that I hadn't seen it until now and that it achieves as much perfection as it does in under 90 minutes. This is absolutely essential viewing for any fans of film noir and particularly for anyone interested in the femme fatale as a symbolic cinematic figure. It's also the first time I've really been bowled over like this since I discovered and fell in love with The Conformist back in May. Anyway:
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[McPherson eventually collects four suspects in his search for the murderer of Laura Hunt - a successful advertising career girl who was shot in the face with a shotgun in her NY apartment. Because her face was obliterated by the blast at close range, she was identified by her clothing:
Laura is characterized by shadowy, dream-like, high-contrast black and white cinematography, and taut and smart dialogue in a quick succession of scenes. It presents the recognizably-poignant and haunting 'Laura' signature theme music, and a decadent and morally-corrupt group of upper-class society types. Almost all of the main protagonists in the entertaining who-dun-it are treated as suspects for a down-to-earth detective. Among the unusual characters are:
If you know anything about faces, look at mine. How singularly innocent I look this morning. Have you ever seen such candid eyes?
Hit men kill an unresisting victim, and investigator Reardon uncovers his past involvement with beautiful, deadly Kitty Collins.
I know you'll have to visit everyone on your list of suspects. I like to study their reactions.
An insurance representative lets himself be talked into a murder/insurance fraud scheme that arouses an insurance investigator's suspicions.
McPherson's investigation and his ultimate revelations are handled in an offhand way, for a 1940s crime picture. He is forever leading people to believe they're going to be charged, and then backing off. Lydecker asks to tag along as the cop interviews suspects; murder is his “favorite crime,” and “I like to study their reactions.” Astonishingly, McPherson lets him. This is useful from a screenplay point of view, since otherwise McPherson would be mostly alone.