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In a Lonely Place (1950)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery | 17 May 1950 (USA)
A potentially violent screenwriter is a murder suspect until his lovely neighbor clears him. But she begins to have doubts...

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Hadda Brooks ...
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Storyline

Screenwriter Dixon Steele, faced with the odious task of scripting a trashy bestseller, has hat-check girl Mildred Atkinson tell him the story in her own words. Later that night, Mildred is murdered and Steele is a prime suspect; his record of belligerence when angry and his macabre sense of humor tell against him. Fortunately, lovely neighbor Laurel Gray gives him an alibi. Laurel proves to be just what Steele needed, and their friendship ripens into love. Will suspicion, doubt, and Steele's inner demons come between them? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

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THE BOGART SUSPENSE PICTURE WITH THE SURPRISE FINISH - (original poster)


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17 May 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Behind the Mask  »

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(Western Electric Recording)

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1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Included among the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider. See more »

Goofs

In the final scene when Dixon hurls Laurel onto the bed and lands on top of her, his watch in the foreground quite visibly shows that is about 4 o'clock. However, the mantle clock on the shelf behind them shows the time as 6 o'clock. See more »

Quotes

Dixon Steele: A man wants to apologize to you...
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Connections

Featured in About Last Night (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

I Hadn't Anyone Till You
(uncredited)
Written by Ray Noble
Performed by Hadda Brooks
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User Reviews

 
Essential Bogie
7 September 2005 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Bogart is at his uncompromisingly dark best as the Hollywood writer whose temper leads to accusations of murder and conflicted relationships. By turns charming, cold, romantic and remorseful, Dix Steele is as unpredictable a character as Bogie has ever played.

He shows no emotion on learning that Mildred - the innocent he has just met - has been killed, and those who know him accept his violent nature as simply part of the Steele package. But thanks to the skill of Bogie and director Ray, the audience never entirely loses sympathy for him. The moments of tenderness he shows to his alibi-turned-lover Laurel (an ethereal Gloria Grahame; imagine Hope Davis glammed-up for the 50s) alternate with fits of anger to turn their relationship into that of a tragic poem.

In A Lonely Place is film noir that focuses on romance rather than crime. The reasons for Mildred's murder are never satisfactorily made clear, but it doesn't really matter. The movie asks whether love and trust are earned by what a person says or what they do. And in the end, actions speak louder than words.


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