Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The File on Thelma Jordon

Thelma Jordon / Tie lakia pakoon / X – filmen om en farlig kvinna. US 1950. New Yorkin premiere 18.1.1950. © 1949 Wallis-Hazen, Inc. Original distributor: Paramount Pictures Corp. P: Hal B. Wallis. D: Robert Siodmak. Ass D: Francisco Day. Dialogue D: Michael Audley. SC: Ketti Frings – from a story by Marty Holland. DP: George Barnes. Camera operator: Jack Warren. Gaffer: Howard Kelly. AD: Hans Dreier, Earl Hedrick. Set dec: Sam Comer, Bertram Granger. Props: Art Camp, Harold Worthington. Special photographic effects: Gordon Jennings. Process photography: Farciot Edouart. Cost: Edith Head. Makeup: Wally Westmore. Hair: Dean Cole. M: Victor Young. S: Harry Lindgren, Walter Oberst, [M.A. Boyce] – Western Electric Recording. ED: Warren Low. Loc: Los Angeles County Jail; courthouse: Santa Ana (California). Studio: Paramount Studios (Hollywood). C: Barbara Stanwyck (Thelma Jordon), Wendell Corey (Cleve Marshall), Paul Kelly (Miles Scott), Joan Tetzel (Pamela Blackwell Marshall), Stanley Ridges (defense attorney Kingsley Willis), Richard Rober (Tony Laredo), Minor Watson (Honorable Calvin H. Blackwell), Barry Kelley (D.A. William Pierce), Laura Elliott (Dolly, Cleve's secretary), Basil Ruysdael (Judge Jonathan David Hancock), Jane Novak (Mrs. Blackwell), Gertrude W. Hoffman (Aunt Vera Edwards), Harry Antrim (Sidney), Kate Drain Lawson (Clara), Theresa Harris (Esther), Byron [S.] Barr (McCary), Geraldine Wall (Matron), Jonathan Corey (Timmy Marshall), Robin Corey (Joan Marshall). Helsinki premiere: 11.5.1951 Savoy, released by: Paramount Pictures – tv: 28.2.1988 TV3, 27.11.2005 YLE TV2 – PCA 13725 – VET 32163 – K16 – 8998 ft / 100 min. - A 16 mm print from La Cinémathèque de la Ville de Luxembourg viewed at Cinema Orion, Helsinki (Robert Siodmak's film noir cycle), 11 April 2012.

The File on Thelma Jordon has been compared with Double Indemnity but it is less slick and does not try to be so clever. Instead there is a current of emotional truth in the story of the frustrated assistant D.A. Cleve (Wendell Corey) and the burglar's accomplice Thelma (Barbara Stanwyck) who turns Cleve into a fall guy. On the basis of a solid screenplay by Ketti Frings, Robert Siodmak maintains a strong but unobtrusive drive in his cinematic storytelling, and the performances by Barbara Stanwyck and Wendell Corey are memorable: both are at their best in this movie. Victor Young provides an effectively melodramatic score. There are unusual scenes with the alcoholic Cleve and the rich, hard-of-hearing aunt Vera. The defense attorney (Stanley Ridges) has a field day, but the whole set-up has been designed by the prosecutor Cleve, yet it is Thelma who is pulling the strings and wins, although her victory finally proves unbearable.

The visual quality was what can be expected from 16 mm.

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