When Johnny comes home from the navy he finds his wife Helen kissing her substitute boyfriend Eddie, the owner of the Blue Dahlia nightclub. Helen admits her drunkenness caused their son's death. He pulls a gun on her but decides she's not worth it. Later, Helen is found dead and Johnny is the prime suspect.Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
After arriving home and being introduced to his wife's friends, Johnny punches his wife's beau in the mouth, then storms into a bedroom where we hear a door slam, but then see the actual door close softly. See more »
[after being picked up]
You gotta have more sense than to take chances with strangers like this.
It's funny but practically all the people were strangers when I met them. I'm going to Malibu. Is that any use to you?
What's in Malibu?
Houses, people. I have some friends there.
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My recording off UK Channel 4 13th Feb 1987 is nearing its end cycle, hopefully the next time I want to trot this episodic classic out it'll be on DVD. Because it was Chandler I always regarded it maybe too highly, but it certainly has some powerful noir-ish moments whilst remaining essentially a normal Paramount studio-bound potboiler.
War vet Alan Ladd comes home to find his wife playing around, gets accused of murdering her while being picked up by Veronica Lake. They indulged in some snappy laconic Chandler-banter but that's as far as their relationship seemed to progress. Murder and mayhem follow Ladd while monkey-music followed his buddy William Bendix. I always wondered: how on Earth did Buzz settle down afterwards, especially when rock & roll came? Everyone has angles or axes to grind, is edgy, dislikeable, seedy or all three, the house-peeper particularly coming in for a lot of stick. Some savage and clunky fight scenes might surprise especially at the Old Cabin when juxtaposed with the romantic nightclub scene. The atmosphere throughout is perfect as was only possible on nitrate film stock. The only thing I never liked was at the climax after Hendrickson asks "You didn't think you were going to walk out that door did you?" - a heavily contrived and swift ending follows.
It was a stranger to me a long time ago, but has been a firm friend of mine for decades now. Did the horticulturists ever succeed in creating a real blue dahlia?
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