In 1930, in Belgium, Gabrielle van der Mal is the stubborn daughter of the prominent surgeon Dr. Pascin Van Der Mal that decides to leave her the upper-class family to enter to a convent, ... See full summary »
Director Billy Wilder salutes his idol, Ernst Lubitsch, with this comedy about a middle-aged playboy fascinated by the daughter of a private detective who has been hired to entrap him with the wife of a client.
Susy was recently blinded and recently married. Susy's husband, Sam, is asked to hold a doll for a woman he doesn't know as they get off an airplane. The woman disappears. Later, she's found dead by her former associates, Mike and Carlino, small-time hoods, in Susy's basement apartment. (Both occupants of the apartment are then absent.) The doll woman's newer partner in crime, Harry Rote, who murdered her for self-dealing, presses Mike and Carlino into a scheme to recover the doll, which contains a fortune in smuggled heroin. After disposing of the body, the thugs return while Susy is present to continue their search. They assume Susy's blindness will enable them to search her apartment under her very nose for the doll, which contains a fortune in smuggled heroin. In Sam's absence, Mike pretends to be an old friend of Sam's, while the three together spin for Susy a story of a murder investigation of her husband from which only the finding of the missing doll can save him. Rote is a ... Written by
"Do I have to be the world's champion blind lady?"
In "Wait Until Dark", I really felt sorry for Audrey Hepburn's Susy Hendrix: blind, lied to by a 'nice' guy who is actually in cahoots with a murderer, sassed by the bespectacled neighbor girl, and then--after a hellish night spent being terrorized by crooks--husband Efrem Zimbalist Jr. walks in and doesn't even give her a hand. "I'm over here, Susy", he tells her, mildly condescending. Film is based on Frederick Knott's popular play, and has an elaborate but obtuse set-up involving a missing doll filled with heroin. There's a lot of talk about where it is, who had it last, etc. The filmmakers bide their time before getting to the showdown between Hepburn and Alan Arkin, cool and collected as a self-assured psychopath. If you can make it through the first half-hour, you'll find that "Wait Until Dark" really gets cooking thereafter. There are some terrific jolts, and Hepburn is a great, stubborn fighter. The frosty, subdued color-photography is 'realistic' and very stylish, as is Henry Mancini's spooky music. Nice end-credits theme song too, by Mancini, Jay Livingston and Ray Evans (the uncredited vocalist is Sue Raney). *** from ****
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