16 March: Double Indemnity

USA 1944. 107 minutes.

Billy Wilder’s film noir masterpiece. If you have never seen this, you really must – it’s unarguably and chair-grippingly brilliant.

Walter Neff, a smooth talking insurance agent, and Phyllis Dietrichson, the wife of one of his clients, are instantly attracted to one another. They plot to murder her old man and make off with his life insurance money, but all does not go to plan…

“As poised and languorous as a cat, Stanwyck’s (the) definitive femme fatale, her manicured ruthlessness calcifying into brutal amorality. With diamond-hard repartee by Wilder and Raymond Chandler (by way of James M Cain’s novel) and ghoulish cinematography by the great John Seitz, this is the gold standard of ’40s noir, straight down the line.” TIME OUT

“If you like your dialogue hardboiled, your lighting shadowy, and your femmes fatales preposterously evil, then look no further.” GUARDIAN

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