Double Indemnity Film Details
Overview: An insurance representative lets himself be talked by a seductive housewife into a murder/insurance fraud scheme that arouses the suspicion of an insurance investigator.
Tagline: From the moment they met it was murder!
Review: In 1943, director of the film, “Double Indemnity”, Billy Wilder, was painstakingly determined to complete a motion picture about this compelling novel written by James M. Cain. Cain is known for other great novels such as “Mildred Pierce” and “The Postman Always Rings Twice”. In the process of creating this major motion picture, several actors, including George Raft and Alan Ladd, turned down the job as the sinister leading male role in this movie. Finally, the part was offered to squeaky clean, Fred MacMurray, this appointment is literally, out of character for MacMurray! Barbara Stanwyck received the honor for the lead female role in “Double Indemnity”, and Edward G Robinson was given the third billing as a star in this picture. This post of third billing was something that had not happened to Edward G Robinson since his prior acting days before “Little Caeser”, which was made in 1931. Robinson capitulated to a third billing spot because he had a great admiration for the concept that the film “Double Indemnity” so intricately purported! The whole genre to “Double Indemnity” was set up flawlessly, as it orchestrated a deliberately contradictory dynamic. Behind the sunny pleasantry of Los Angeles, there lurked a deep rooted and conniving chicanery amidst a couple of masterminds who began implementing a horribly dark aspect of human behavior. The film, “Double Indemnity” manifested the rough exterior that the United Staes was besieged with because of their involvement in World War II. The American movie goer had become a little less naive since the advent of WWII, and, this reflected itself accordingly with regards to the type of movie they wanted to see. The film noir captivated the American public, and, now, the movie industry encompassed a myriad of wry depictions that were germane to the pejorative side of an individual. This dubiously sensationalistic technique by the motion picture industry was perceived as intriguing by the newly enlightened movie audience of the early 1940’s!! The film “Double Indemnity” epitomizes the entire film noir pique, right alongside with the uncanny masterpiece “Maltese Falcon”. “Double Indemnity” did not win for best picture in 1944, that year, the Academy Award was given to “Going My Way”. As we all know, there are times when life simply does not make any sense, especially since a prominent Philadelphia critic rated “Going My Way” the worst Academy Award winning film in the whole history of the American cinema! “Double Indemnity” is considered to be Billy Wilder’s best directing effort! The next year, Billy Wilder’s directorial ability was totally vindicated, as he received his rightfully deserved acclaim with the film, “The Lost Weekend”, which won for best picture in 1945. Billy Wilder received the Academy Award for best director that year as well. The film, “Double Indemnity” is truly remarkable!! The itemized and avaricious intensity to this movie was something that had not been depicted in films before the movie “Double Indemnity” was made. This film’s wiles of malice and deceit were not expedited with a derivative and visceral disposition, rather, these antics were carried off with a dedicated fervor and paramount gratification. Fred MacMurray’s character was perpetually afflicted with a relentless angst that infiltrated an acrimonious reveille to him about the primary repercussions of personal greed! His character, Walter Neff, endured a narrative agony which perpetuated a compulsive pontification about how people really are, as opposed to the way they are suppose to be! Barbara Stanwyck established her formidable status as a revolutionary femme-fatal in the Hollywood world of movies, with her performance in “Double Indemnity”. Charismatically charming while wearing her diverse onslaught of angora sweaters, her beauty and allure became a necessary ingredient to the making of this film! The wig that Barbara Stanwyck wore for this movie, signified the overall mendacity to her heinously lethal and obsessive persona!! Stanwyck’s intellectual ambiguity to this role was attributed to her overtly callous set of pecuniary priorities! Edward G. Robinson’s character was the perennial voice of reason. Robinson was the legal eagle who would ultimately prevail in his tenacious quest to resolve all of these dubiously manufactured and felonious escapades! The final scene with MacMurray and Stanwyck was an all-time noir classic. This last scene with MacMurray and Stanwyck was one of the best scenes of any movie whatsoever, definitely head to head with the extraordinary last scene of the movie “The Killing”. A respected production company ranks this ending the sixth best ending of any and all movies ever produced! The dramatic ending to “Double Indemnity” was rated right above “Casablanca” and right below “City Lights”. The heightened glamor to the final scene for MacMurray and Stanwyck exuded a zenith within the realm of the classic film noir mystique. The emphatic, yet subtle, overtone to the song “Tangerine” playing in the background, became a melodic element to this final scene which was conducive to a sexually sedate form of apocalyptic doom and despair! Throughout the entire duration of this movie, Fred MacMurray and Barbara Stanwyck were always seducing each other with salacious innuendos! This ending wound up emulating a philosophical perspective used by writers of ancient Greek tragedies! Filming a movie in black and white is primarily advantageous to the quality of a film, as it obviates any disorientation to the impact of the characters’ emotions!! AFI (AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE) ranks “Double Indemnity” the 29th best film out of the top 100 American movies ever made! This website ranks “Double Indemnity” 53rd out of the top 250 films ever produced. Last, but certainly not least, America’s Writer’s Guild East, ranks “Double Indemnity” the 26th best written script ever in the history of American films!! The director, Billy Wilder, does a tremendous job with consummating the aggregate megalomania and rancor to this movie. The acting was sensational. “Double Indemnity” was up for seven Academy Awards in 1944! Without question! “Double Indemnity” is one of the greatest films ever created… FIVE STARS… PERFECT TEN!!!!
Country: United States
Duration: 107 min
Genre: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
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