ARTYFACTS: The Black Dahlia

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Black Dahlia

Brian DePalma (Carrie, Dressed to Kill, Blowout and The Untouchables) gives us a faux 40s film noir movie of indescribable boredom. The mood and tone isn't low and dangerous, it's art direction makes it look set-like. One can create the 1940s without paying hommage (I hate that word) to the ham acting, crude scripts and moody set-ups.

The acting is over directed with Scarlet 'whatever her name' trying desperately to simulate those 40s movie star looks and pouts. You feel nothing for any of the characters, and some, like the mad Scotsman and his family, are Adams Family caricatures. Although I did rather like the lines and performance of the mad mother.

As for the script, it's appalling. The plot meanders without any real build and release of tension. In the last 20 minutes you just want it to be over - it's way too long and convoluted. I'm getting fed up just recalling the experience.


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