Wilder, whose camera is always judging, is here completely without judgment. The lovers are covered by a warm shadow, and the details of their skin and their clothing are tactile; exact, but not caricaturistic. It’s not that witty Billy is letting his guard down—it feels more like he realizes that here, his sarcastic stance is useless. This is something wit and cynicism can’t affect, and he lets the camera linger a little, before the next shot comes and the comedy resumes.
July 23, 2010