Friday, May 6, 2016
In a Lonely Place
In a Lonely Place follows the relationship between a struggling screenwriter Dix played by Humphrey Bogart and woman Laurel played by Gloria Grahame. This all takes place around a murder mystery, where Dix's seems a chief suspect, and set in a the seedy underbelly of Hollywood. Nicholas Ray directs this all with a sledgehammer, leaving any subtly out the door, and place the most absurd elements for all they are worth. This is not helped by Bogart who does not tread the fine line needed for the man you may or may not trust. He instead plays him like a normal guy who seems to act like a psychopath for no reason other than to give the film its central conflict apparently. Now the film's style does not make it a boring affair, but at the same time it does not effectively serve the story particularly the central relationship. It makes everything seem forced in a way it did not need to be, and leaves a potentially interesting story to underwhelm.