There's a mouthwatering collection of film noir classics to feast upon at the Barbican this weekend. Tomorrow, Billy Wilder fans can revel in Double Indemnity, starring smouldering Barbara Stanwyck and her naughty, naughty anklet, and Gloria Swanson terrorising hunky William Holden in Sunset Boulevard. There's also Phantom Lady, from the novel by Cornell Woolrich (who also wrote Rear Window) and Rita Hayworth in Gilda, which features one of celluloid's sexiest moments when Rita Hayworth peels off an evening glove and tosses back her hair singing "Put the Blame on Mame". She stars opposite Glenn Ford, who in turn leads tonight's terrifying taster, Fritz Lang's The Big Heat. He is, however, completely overshadowed by Gloria Grahame (above, right) as the moll who squeals and winds up having scalding coffee thrown in her face by Lee Marvin. It's an iconic performance. Shame on Hollywood for never figuring out how to use her obvious talent.
David BenedictReuse content