Carnival dancer Lane Bellamy finds herself stranded in a southern town ruled by corrupt political boss Titus Semple. Lane becomes romantically involved with sheriff Fielding Carlisle, a ... See full summary »
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W.S. Van Dyke
Carnival dancer Lane Bellamy finds herself stranded in a southern town ruled by corrupt political boss Titus Semple. Lane becomes romantically involved with sheriff Fielding Carlisle, a weakling whose career is being driven by Titus. Seeing Lane as a liability to his own political ambitions, Titus mounts a campaign to get her driven out of town. She finds she can't get a job and even gets arrested on a trumped-up morals charge. Released from jail, Lane finds work as a "hostess" at Lutie-Mae's road house, where she meets Dan Reynolds, another member of the town's political machine. They marry and move to a home on Flamingo Road, the town's social pinnacle. Their marriage is soon marked by scandal when a drunken Carlisle visits Lane at home one evening and shoots himself. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <email@example.com>
Originally intended as a vehicle for Ann Sheridan, who turned down role played by 'Joan Crawford'. See more »
One hour and twelve minutes into the film, Titus Semple and Fielding Carlisle have an argument in the construction office; Titus throws Fiedling out the door into the dirt then walks out the door. He stops, takes a whiskey bottle and breaks the glass in the door with Fielding's name on it. The sugar confection used in Hollywood for break-away glass flies onto Titus's cheek under his left eye. It sticks for one second then falls off. See more »
Mildred Pierce meets the devil on her way to easy street.
This film is a joy to watch, even if defies logic. The narrative is convoluted, to put it mildly. Joan Crawford as a carnival girl? That's a stretch of the imagination. From the very beginning, watching Ms Crawford and the two other dancing women, the viewer realizes that he has to be kind to this film. Her take on Lane Bellamy is vintage Crawford!
This must have been a vehicle for the star right after her star turn in Mildred Pierce. It has some of the same people behind it, like director Michael Curtiz and Zachary Scott. The dialogue is something to be treasured. They don't make films like this anymore. Just imagine what panache Ms Crawford brought to anything she appeared in.
The cast that was assembled for this film is probably impossible to match. The great Sydney Greenstreet is so good as the evil sheriff Titus Semple, that we stay riveted looking at his every move. David Brian as the man who loves Lane and rescues her from poverty is also an asset. The minor players, Gladys George, Fred Clark and Virginia Huston, among others fit right into the story.
But this is a Joan Crawford's film. She dominates every scene in which she appears. What power she conveys with only an economy of gestures. No one working in films these days can come near to this actress, who left her own imprint in the canon of American cinema, not to be equaled by anyone any time soon.
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