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In a Lonely Place (1950)

8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 13,740 users  
Reviews: 128 user | 79 critic

A potentially violent screenwriter is a murder suspect until his lovely neighbor clears him. But she begins to have doubts...

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Frank Lovejoy ...
Carl Benton Reid ...
Art Smith ...
Jeff Donnell ...
Martha Stewart ...
Robert Warwick ...
Morris Ankrum ...
William Ching ...
Steven Geray ...
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

Taglines:

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


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

17 May 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Behind the Mask  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Though the title and characters are based on Dorothy B. Hughes's novel, the biggest difference between book and movie is that in the movie Dixon Steele, though violent, is only accused of being a murderer while in the book he is a serial killer and rapist. Director Nicholas Ray claimed that he made the change because he was "more interested in doing a film about the violence in all of us, rather than a mass murder film or one about a psychotic." Hughes was never bothered by the changes from her novel and praised Gloria Grahame's performance. See more »

Goofs

In the Dixon's apartment, after Mildred picks up the book on the floor, she holds it with her right hand, maintaining the handbag in the left one. Soon after, when Dixon approaches her, she moves aside the right hand. The next shot shows her left hand leaning on her right. See more »

Quotes

Laurel Gray: Why can't he be like other people?
Mel Lippmann: Like other people - would you have liked him? You knew he was dynamite - he has to explode sometimes! Years ago, I tried to make him go and see a psychiatrist. I thought he'd kill me! Always violent. Well it's as much a part of him as the color of his eyes, the shape of his head. He's Dix Steele. And if you want him, you've gotta take it all, the good with the bad. I've taken it for 20 years and I'd do it again.
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Connections

Referenced in Mulholland Drive (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

I Hadn't Anyone Till You
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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Recent Posts
I cried at the ending. nimstic
Why is it called 'In a Lonely Place'??? waldenpond88
Marriage would have been a disaster richard-2266
why don't people like this movie? Lonely_Hearts
Lesbian Character? adamcar
Did anyone else find this movie uproariously funny? sixfinger88
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