Fallen Angel (1945)

US 20th Century Fox DVD

Some foot massage .... Nice

Text below written 2016-04-30


A Great Classic of Film Noir and 20th Century Fox follow-up to the Otto Preminger Masterpiece Laura.
Small time hustler Eric (Dana Andrews) arrives to a sleepy Californian coastal town with only one dollar in his
pocket. He meets the local No.1 beauty, the harder than hard food-joint waitress Stella (a Sensational Linda
Darnell
) and probably The Local Slut, and the sexual attraction between them just crackles ... Zap, Pow !
Darnell, the ultimate Film Noir waitress, life-weary, hardened but sexually arousing.

BUT, to successfully manoeuvre her into the bed for some hot sex he needs dineros, greenbacks, and lots of
them as she's tired of the local loosers. The Plan: 1. A lonely, sexually starved and wealthy church lady in June
(Alice Faye) and 2. A handsome man in Eric to con the lady out of her savings.
He's about to rip-off poor June and then disappear with the Slut when there's a murder and a change of plans.
Andrews and Darnell are perfect as The Bad Couple as the sexual chemistry between them feels true, but
maybe this film is a bit too uneven to be called a Masterpiece .... or maybe not? When Stella is killed off, the
film looses the intensity .... it's almost as LaShelle, the lighting crew and her male customers at the joint all let
out a united Noooooo .... Stella come back.
Even Dana Andrews himself admits that ... "Linda Darnell was the best thing in the picture".

The Bad Couple

Alice Faye, 20th Century Fox big 1940's musical star was promised the main female (non-singing) role of
June. She
was supposed to be the star but legend says Darnell dated someone important and the camera
concentrated on Darnell (wisely, i say ...) and many of Faye's dramatic scenes ended up on the cutting room
floor and poor Faye was furious and even quitted making films.
At 20th Century Fox they surely realized they had some dynamite in their hands and they decided to use it -
Linda Darnell
.

Warning! Here's a heterosexual old gaffers ode to the beauty of Linda Darnell - stay away if allergic

.....................................
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Young Linda (Photo: Frank Powolny, 20th Century Fox)

Ronald L. Davis Hollywood Beauty - Linda Darnell and the American Dream (University of Oklahoma Press, 1991)
A tender and a bit sad portrait about the beautiful actress Linda Darnell with insights, empathy and warmth

Linda Darnell's explosive performance 70 years ago .... or, to be honest .... her gorgeousness makes this film
remembered even today. Also the Sensational film noir style cinematography from Maestro Joseph LaShelle
is a joy to see, his camera is having sex with her, WOW! .... and Dana and the others look great too.
She's sensational and the world's (male) audiences must've watched the ongoings with gaping mouths bombed
down into their seats. The Art of the Great Joseph LaShelle made 2 actresses Film Goddesses, Gene in 1944
Laura by Otto Preminger, and Linda in this 1945 follow-up to Laura.
LaShelle had already photographed her earlier the same year in the Great Hangover Square directed by John
Brahm, and also there with devastating effect when she played another Bitch role. Darnell was made playing a
plottering Femme Fatale. Let's not forget the music by David "Laura" Raksin either.

Dana Andrews, no words needed, a great actor that always delivered. Of the Darnell films i've seen (not that
many though) my No.1 performance of her is the one as the white trash bum Edie in Joseph L. Mankiewics

racial hate noir thriller No Way Out from 1950, Stella in Fallen Angel as No.2 and Netta Langdon in Hangover
Square as No.3. Forever Amber 1948 was a mess and i haven't seen the 1949 A Letter to Three Wives

Original ratio 4:3 fullscreen, black & white, english audio 2.0 stereo or mono with english subtitles
Extras: a very good and filled with information commentary track from the Maestro of Film Noir Commentary
tracks - Eddie Muller (i love this guy) and the daughter of Dana Andrews, Susan, picture galleries (publicity,
production/unit photography), trailer and a info sheet
.... If Only Section: The commentary track to Leave Her To Heaven had featured Eddie Muller

 

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