First up on last night’s Noir City bill was The Accused.
A prim professor, played by Loretta Young, is being stalked by a creepy student. When he tries to rape her on the edge of a Malibu cliff, she kills him and then sets it up to look like a diving accident. Of course, she’s a woman, so she quickly cracks up.
I had issues with this film. It’s really good, well made and well acted, but man, is it breathtakingly sexist. And this is coming from a hardcore noir fan like me, who will happily watch films where guys slap women and then kiss them. Look, I get that things were different back then, and you can’t enjoy these flicks as much as I do without accepting the fact that they are products of their bygone era. But this particular film really went the limit. The concept of the frigid spinster character whose PhD is psychology can’t make up for her failure to “catch” a man. The line about how, when she puts on a pretty dress, her “brains don’t show at all!” The inevitability of her crack-up and how easily she can be manipulated and broken by clever men. I wanted this flick to be about an icy, ruthless murderess rather than a neurotic mess who just needs a man to save her from her crazy self.
I will say this though. The scene where Sam Jaffe goads her into reenacting the murder with a clay model of the victim’s head is off the fucking hook.
It’s worth seeing just for that! So yeah, can’t exactly recommend this one, but your milage may vary.
The B picture was the legendary Ice Skating Noir classic The Hunted.
I had to skip out on this one to finish getting the Fausthaus squared away to sleep in for the first night in three months (!!!) but I’ve already seen and written about The Hunted. If you haven’t seen it, Mistress Christa says check it out. Meanwhile, please enjoy this photo of the lovely Belita in a leopard gown.
Tonight it’s one I’ve been looking forward to all week; Chicago Deadline and I Was a Shoplifter!