Well yes, it's compelling viewing in spite of, everything. So overwrought it's jarring and at the center of it all, Kim Novak. The swan of Picnic. James Stewart's obsession in Vertigo. She appears in The Legend Of Lylah Clare, but she's not really in it. Distant, cold, awkward. Pale, almost white lipstick. She has a death scene for goodness sake! It reminded me of that death that Goldie Hawn plays again and again in "Death Becomes Her", she watches it on TV as her arch rival, Meryl Streep, brilliantly plays an actress without talent - dies again and again strangled by Michael Caine. Meryl's Madeline Ashton even licks her lips before her death - Well, Kim Novak's Elsa Campbell/Lylah Clare doesn't lick her lips but almost.Peter Finch is the leading man. Peter Finch! Howard Beale in "Network" His dialogue here is not by Paddy Chayefsky, no, not by a long shot. Hysterically funny I must admit, specially because of the seriousness of the delivery. Then, surprise surprise a few genuine delights, Coral Browne plays a columnist with a wooden leg, Rosella Falk, a talkative lesbian and the glorious Valentina Cortese plays a costume designer. As I'm writing about it I feel an urge to see it again to make sure I didn't imagine the whole thing.
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