SIODMAK Noir 2 === Fucked up plans, greedy seducers, disillusioned and obstinate cops, heroes born losers, twisted criminals, the universe of Noir according to SIODMAK. Yvonne de CARLO attracting femme fatale. === Plan foireux, séductrices cupides, flics désabusés et opiniâtres, héros born losers, malfrats tordus, l'univers du noir selon SIODMAK. Yvonne de CARLO fatale à souhait.
A fine noir from Siodmak. Nothing that transcends the form, but it ticks the boxes smoothly: fatalism, double-crosses, flashbacks, voiceover, a crime gone wrong, and a woman who's probably even bigger trouble than she seems. The heist setpiece is great, and it's always nice when something does justice to the verities. Cheers to the Aero for the whole evening—I now know how to properly pronounce "Dan Duryea."
What makes Criss Cross stand out among the many films noir is its non linear storytelling devices combined with one of the most impressive femme fatales I've ever seen. Together they keep you on your toes throughout the film, a quality that you don't always get in a genre made up of strict conventions. Would give it 3 stars but I'm a sucker for Burt.
Top notch noir with noir stalwarts Duryea and Lancaster bringing a lot of grit to their roles. De Carlo is the perfect femme fatale. Who knew Lily Munster was such a babe? Siodmak also directed other great noirs Phantom Lady and the Killers, but this may be his best. Unflinching from beginning to end. Essential for noir fans.
Siodmak's noirs seem to much more quotidian, blue-collar and workaday than others'. For one, the "femme fatale" is trouble, yes, but she isn't conniving or manipulative - just in love. Lancaster too isn't a smooth dick in a fancy suit, but an average joe in overalls who nonetheless gets wrapped up in the fatalism of a cruel world. The ending of this one is particularly impactful in its bluntness and lack of glamour.
I think Siodmak may be my favorite classic director. Criss Cross is fantastic. Another shot / reverse shot sequence punctuated by music here, like in the jam session sequence in the Phantom Lady. The ending, with the sea in the background, behind the window, is simply sublime.
A slow burner that reveals its double crossing characters in crime and love with superb efficiency and as always with Siodmark their simmering dark fatalistic sexuality.The last sequence when the heist explodes in surreal chaos as the darkness and shadows swallow the lovers up as they are gunned down on a sofa with a moonlit sea in the background by creepy dan dureya are some of Siodmak's greatest moments.
Hallucinatory and exhilaratingly cynical, this is an improvement on The Killers in its economic storytelling, emotional involvement and Siodmak's further development of his striking and beautiful visual style. The shot of Lancaster and de Carlo perfectly murdered is one of the most startling and effective images in all of film noir.
I know, I know, the banal fatalism of the payroll heist is old news. Still, this is a rare Dan Duryea role where he doesn't bitch-slap the femme fatale (here played by the future Lily Munster) (though she does have Duryea-inflicted contusions on her back). If I read this flick correctly, lust and jealousy are the two most powerful motivating forces in the world: I won't argue, even despite the pat tragic ending.