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Sunday, July 8, 2007

Today The Stranger Suggests…

posted by on July 8 at 11:18 AM

Desert Fury and Leave Her to Heaven

(FILM) A pair of seriously perverse “Technicolor noirs” from the 1940s, Desert Fury and Leave Her to Heaven are two of the wackiest finds at the Noir City series—a week’s worth of $10 double features launching the new year-round SIFF Cinema. Oedipal passions! Gay gangsters! Obsessive love! Dreamboat Burt Lancaster and then icy-hot Gene Tierney! These are not archetypal noirs, but they’re dark as night. (SIFF Cinema, 321 Mercer St, Desert Fury at 1, 5:05, and 9:10 pm, Leave Her to Heaven at 3 and 7 pm, $10 for two consecutive shows.) ANNIE WAGNER

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I've never gotten the whole Burt Lancaster thing. He's never appealed to me for some reason.

Posted by It's Mark Mitchell | July 8, 2007 11:41 AM

Leave Her to Heaven!!!

Stop what you are doing and go see this movie. Gene Tierney disbursing ashes while on horseback is topped only slightly by the scene of her in a row boat...with dark sunglasses...watching....waiting...

i wish i were in Seattle today.

Posted by patrick | July 8, 2007 11:57 AM

The film is visually stunning: with very tight control over the color schemes and ridiculously lush makeup by Ben Nye. This is definitely a big screen film. It really feels more like a Douglas Sirk Melodrama than it does like a noir tough, and it certainly doesn't have the typical noir dynamic: the two-bit crook trying to make it in a cruel world undone by a femme fatale and taking a innocent people with him when he falls.

Posted by kinaidos | July 8, 2007 12:18 PM

"Leave Her to Heaven" is marvelous. It won an Oscar for its color cinematography and was nominated for art direction, sound recording, and Gene Tierney got a nod for best actress.

The movie's plot is an anachronism. Ellen Berent was more psycho than what even hardcore noir film goers were used to. Nobody had ever been so completely amoral in film and yet so utterly beautiful and seemingly innocent. Most film psychos to date had been of the Richard Widmark's Tommy Udo variety. This made a lot of people - A LOT - more uncomfortable than they had planned on being at a love story ala thriller.

Historically, this kind of uneasy, attractive shock doesn't happen very often to a cinemaphile. It's a great, great film and was 20th Century Fox's biggest hit of the 40s.

Posted by Bauhaus | July 8, 2007 12:45 PM

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