Scarlet Street (1945)

“Scarlet Street” is an outstanding 1945 American Film directed by Fritz Lang, famous for the films “Metropolois” and “M,” made in Germany earlier in his career. It is based on the book “La Chienne” (The Bitch) by Georges de La Fouchardiere which Jean Renoir had previously filmed as “La Chienne” in 1931.

The main actors, Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett and Dan Duryea had earlier appeared in “The Woman in the Window,” made in 1944 by Fritz Lang.

Dhrostopher Cross (Edward G. Robinson,” a mild banker and amateur painter is at a dinner honouring him for 25 years of service at his bank. On his way home he helps Kitty (Joan Bennett,) thing wife e femme fatale of the story, who is being attacked by a man. He becomes enamoured by her, his domestic life ruled by his bullying wife Adele (Rosalind Ivan,) who still idolises her dead first husband.

From Christopher’s comments about art, Kitty mistakenly believes him to be a wealthy painter. It turns out that the attacker was Johnny, Kitty’s brutish boyfriend who convinces her to continue the relationship with Cross in order to extort money.

Cross starts to spend money on Kitty but has to steal from the bank in order to finance this new life. Johnny tries to sell some of Cross’s paintings but makes Kitty put her name on them. Cross’s wife sees the paintings in a gallery with Kitty’s name on them and then accuses him of copying her work!

Meanwhile, the supposedly dead husband of Cross’s wif suddenly reappears, the intrigue taking another on another dimension.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 at 8:06 am and is filed under Black & White, Film Noir.

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