Just because that meal was great last week doesn't mean the leftovers are edible today... Once a game changer; now just another pretty noir full of tired moralism. Still, very watchable, and not just because of the luminous Ms. Novak. Plenty of fascinating aspects: That this relatively tepid portrayal of addiction was once so taboo, for one. Or that no one, back then, found the score hilarious. 2.5
Preminger's take on drug addiction is a performance film of the first order featuring a career best turn by Sinatra, and great support from Novak, McGavin and Eleanor Parker as the mentally disturbed wife. Script by Newman and Meltzer has a gritty authenticity, for the time period, and a memorable score from Bernstein along with strong production values that make up for a convenient ending and obvious back lot locale
Kim Novak est sublime d'élégance, de justesse et de beauté, Sinatra criant de vérité, la mise en scène est parfaite, et voilà le chef d'oeuvre d'un cinéma américain qui savait dépeindre le monde dans sa misère et sa déchéance, je veux dire son propre monde celui d'une Amérique des ratés, des accros, des petits et des perdus. C'est poignant et bouleversant. Great movie , yes Mister Preminger
I've never been a huge fan of Sinatra the actor and this didn't changed my opinion. The story wasn't anything special so it should've been carried on performances and the three primaries (Sinatra, Parker & Novak) were all kinda flat. Parker in particular was hard to tolerate every time she was on-screen. Stang, Strauss & McGavin were great characters as always but it wasn't enough to make for a memorable flick.
Tremendous direction by Otto Preminger - one of Hollywood's greatest unsung heroes - both in the art of staging and directing actors, and in pacing the narrative through the latter. Powered by an electrifying score, vigorous supporting performances (namely Darren McGavin) and a screenplay that shows great understanding of human behavior, 'The Man with the Golden Arm' doesn't get nearly as much credit as it should.
Kind of aged badly, but good if considered a product of its time. Film noir taking itself seriously; everyone's a bad guy & has to pay his dues in a moralistically obvious and self defying way; full of junkies asking for their fix, stuff like that. Direction and photography are great, the characters fascinating in their not being full rounded, the writing's good but some scenes go on too long with unneeded dialogue.
Kim Novak looks like Rutger Hauer in drag when she tosses Sinatra's wraith-like, heroin-fiending self around the hotel room. The only thing that I've taken away from this movie is that horn sections were once used with alarming regularity to highlight action in 1950s cinema. *Toot!*
Even with the taboo-breaking themes the writers could not resist watering down the moral complexity, could they? That said, it is fascinating to see the relationship of the low-and-out junkie with his boss and peddler. The show-stealer is the cinematography: such precision and economy is something to behold.