Abgekartetes Spiel (1947)

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Abgekartetes Spiel: Directed by Richard Wallace. With Glenn Ford, Janis Carter, Barry Sullivan, Edgar Buchanan. Mike Lambert, seeking a mining job, instead becomes the patsy for a femme-fatale’s schemes.

“FRAMED starts out with a bang, with Glenn Ford trying to steer a speeding truck with no brakes to its destination, but gradually it started to lose me as it sped along into increasingly illogical plot turns. Janis Carter plays the least appealing femme fatale Iu0026#39;ve ever seen in a film noir. (In any lineup of great ladies of film noir, her name has never come up.) Here sheu0026#39;s plotting with her lover, a married banker (Barry Sullivan), to fake his death, retrieve the money heu0026#39;s embezzled, and head off to happier climes. But they need a patsy with no ties to substitute for the banker. And thatu0026#39;s where Ford, a mining engineer looking for work, comes in. Weu0026#39;re supposed to believe Ms. Carter can entice Ford, but he never displays anything but rank hostility in her presence. When he finally kisses her, itu0026#39;s more of a physical assault than an act of lust. When it comes to carrying out the death-faking part, they enact a scene straight out of DOUBLE INDEMNITY. The plan they adopt is so poorly thought out that even the most cursory police investigation would see through it. u003cbr/u003eu003cbr/u003eFord at least is punchy and irritable throughout, a side of him Iu0026#39;ve never quite seen before. He glares with the best of them and passes out drunk a couple of times. Heu0026#39;s nice to Edgar Buchanan, though. And who wouldnu0026#39;t be? As silly as the proceedings get, itu0026#39;s never too predictable and moves at a fast clip throughout. This is low-end film noir, a far cry from James M. Cain and Raymond Chandler, but still worth recording off TCM and watching once. Barry Sullivan (whose centennial is tomorrow, August 29) plays a solid citizen with a corrupt core, a long way from the rugged western heroes heu0026#39;d portray ten years later (e.g. FORTY GUNS), but closer to the antagonists heu0026#39;d specialize in playing on TV dramas in the 1960s and u0026#39;70s.”


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