Dir. Otto Preminger
USA 1944 | Black & White | 88mins | Cert PG | Crime | Film Noir
Cast: Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb
This new restoration will be released by the BFI on 24 February 2012 and is now available for booking on DCP.
‘I shall never forget the weekend Laura died…’ So begins Preminger’s masterpiece about erotic obsession, jealousy, deceit and deadly betrayal.
The narrator welcoming us into the pleasingly perverse upper-crust New York of the film is Waldo Lydecker (Clifton Webb), a columnist who writes ‘with a goose quill dipped in venom’, first encountered at work in his bath by Mark McPherson (Dana Andrews), the detective investigating the recent murder of beautiful advertising executive Laura (Gene Tierney). But Waldo’s not the sole suspect; there’s Laura’s fiancé Shelby (Vincent Price), and Shelby’s somewhat older lover Ann Treadwell (Judith Anderson)… And can McPherson’s judgement really be trusted anyway, given that he too appears to have fallen for the dead woman he’s hearing about? A brilliantly witty, tortuous script (including, very memorably, Lydecker’s mordantly egotistical commentary) and Preminger’s cool, sharp-sighted direction ensure that the film succeeds gloriously as both social satire and taut suspense. One of the subtlest, most sophisticated and most invigoratingly acerbic Hollywood crime movies ever made. - Geoff Andrew
Other Otto Preminger titles available from the BFI on 35mm only:
Dir. Otto Preminger | USA 1959 | 160 mins | Cert 12A | With: James Stewart, Lee Remic
Available on: DCP
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