Scarlet Street : Down that Scarlet Street (***Possible Spoilers!***)

Down that Scarlet Street (***Possible Spoilers!***)

Edward G. Robinson played a most sympathetic character looking so small (I know he was 5'5" in real life and his short stature was used to great effect here. In other films he comes across as "Bigger Than Life").

Scarlet Street is humorous and gripping at the same time. Some of the situations and dialogue will have you laughing but all the while waiting for the other shoe to drop. I was laughing but felt as if a noose was being tightened around my neck! What a feat!

Joan Bennett was a living doll and perfect in her role. Dan Duryea turns in a performance as the ultimate portrait sleezball and set a standard for cinematic slimey characters. Along with Robinson, under Fritz Lang's direction they gave terrific performances.

The atmosphere (background players) brought the world inhabited by the principle characters to life. All supporting roles were spot on!

Now the Hayes Office had that standard in place that criminals had to get their comeuppance. This story kind of skirted that but complied at the same time. Well, done. Very suspenseful.

The ending brought to my mind the one from The Pawnbroker (1965).

Scarlet Street is one of those "must see movies"!

(My thanks to The Dying Flutchman)

Re: Down that Scarlet Street (***Possible Spoilers!***)

Thanx for the kind words at bottom of yer note, elevator man or is it escalator man. The reddish roundabout of "Scarlet Street" was filmed by the German Noir master Fritz Lang is his typical style in which a common sort of guy, under the influence of the corrupting influences of the forces of evil, make him succumb to vice first and then to evil. Yes, some of it is hilarious, but then that is the trap all schlubs often find themselves enveloped in. Trapped by beauty and forced to dance the dance of the female demon.

Milton Krasner's cinematography was perfect for illustrating the disintegration of the leading character. The stark white light of passion illuminates the ice cold heart of the femme fatale as she is dispatched to the laundry room at the end of the black rainbow. So much hilarity that I can barely continue writing my message.

The lead character is undeniably an artist of merit, but pathetically weak and vulnerable, a patsy in the hands of the mercenary meanies. Lang layers his tale with contempt for "little men" but all those who take glee in this journey to the dark side take care lest we, too, succumb to the mysteries of the dark.

"Sniffing drainpipes and reciting the alphabet."

Re: Down that Scarlet Street (***Possible Spoilers!***)

"Lang layers his tale with contempt for "little men"..."
I know this is a very old thread, but I'll ask anyway.Why do you think that?
I didn't see it that way at all. Yes, Chris Cross is indeed weak and pathetic, but the audience does not feel contempt for him, just pity. He is a genuinely nice person who has been pushed to the limits once too often. The audience is always on his side.

Interestingly enough, he is the only really sympathetic person in the film especially considering that he is a double murderer (Johnny's death included).

Jessica Rabbit
"I'm not bad. I'm just drawn that way."
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