The Strange Love of Martha Ivers: first thoughts

Barbara Stanwyck is my new idol. Really, cool, smart, fierce, if it wasn't for the murderous instincts she has in the two movies I've recently seen her in (this one and Double Indemnity) she'd be a perfect role model. I'm hoping to get a hold of "The Lady Eve" soon, I can't wait to see how she does comedy.

Also, does Lizabeth Scott look like Lauren Bacall or what? Slightly more wholesome, slightly less cunning maybe, but wow. And an impressive actress, too.

And that leaves...the men. Who are definitely less impressive than the women in this film, at least character-wise. This is Kirk Douglas' debut, but he doesn't register so much, really (admittedly, it might have been the part). As for Van Heflin, I don't know if it's because standards of attractiveness have changed so much, but I had a hard time buying him as a ladies man, and his flirting seemed WAY too over the top.

All in all though, a nice little noir. I like the twist that the blackmail is called into life by the people who fear it. There's a nice undercurrent of class tensions. And whaddaya know, there's even a sort-of happy ending.

Which just leaves one question: why is it that when I feel crappy a nice and cynical film noir is exactly what I need, while a feel good comedy will leave me feeling crappier even than before?

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