In a Lonely Place

InALonelyPlaceSuggested by Brad Nelson • A potentially violent screenwriter is a murder suspect. His record of belligerence when angry, and his macabre sense of humor, tell against him. His lovely neighbor gives him an alibi. But she begins to have doubts.
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3 Responses to In a Lonely Place

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    Proof that sometimes all that is missing from a film-noir is good acting. This has it in spades (although not Sam Spades). But the plot is interesting and original as well.

    In one of his finest performances, Bogart plays a “creative type” screenwriter who also seems to have a bit of a lingering temper. A woman he had hired to help with a current script dies under mysterious circumstances. His neighbor, a pretty blond played by Gloria Grahame, gives him a partial alibi. They later get together and further complicate an already dicey situation, at least in the eyes of the police.

    Both Bogie and Grahame play characters who are straight-talking. The cops don’t know what to make of either one of them. Bogie is still under suspicion for the murder, but it helps that one of his friends is one of the cops investigating — although that friendship doesn’t prevent the cop from doing his job.

    Grahame (“Violet” in It’s a Wonderful LIfe) is known for playing characters that sparkle. She brings an under-stated bearing to Laurel Gray. She’s fast and sassy but never delves into being a mere caricature of that type. The entire cast is full of believable characters. This drama is all the more captivating because of it.

    This is first-rate film noir and a must-see for Bogie fans. Gloria Grahame shines brightly as well. The dialogue is sharp and biting. The ending is worthy of what had come before.

  2. Kung Fu Zu Kung Fu Zu says:

    I saw this for the first time a couple of years back. It is good movie. Grahame has a special film presence, fragile and hard at the same time.

    I also like her in “The Big Heat” with Glenn Ford and Lee Marvin.

    She died too young.

  3. Timothy Lane says:

    Robert Bloch, the writer of macabre (but often blackly humorous) fiction (his most famous work is Psycho, which was changed less for the movie version than most Hitchcock sources), once did a story (“The Closer of the Way” if I remember correctly) about being sent to a private mental hospital. The psychiatrist went after him over his work, which angered Bloch (with ultimately fatal results for the psychiatrist). At one point, Bloch is pointing out (to himself) that many Boris Karloff was a nice person, not some monster. (The psychiatrist had argued that Bloch must hate people because he made a living scaring them.) One can see a certain similarity to the idea of this movie.

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