Friday, January 28, 2011

Fritz Lang Retrospective

above: Coop kicks Nazi ass.

The New York Times ran a good piece last Sunday on director Fritiz Lang in advance of a new series, FRITZ LANG IN HOLLYWOOD, running at the Film Forum from January 28 to February 10. I'm happy the article singled out the often overlooked Lang spy film CLOAK AND DAGGER, which provides our only chance to see Gary Cooper as a physics professor who dukes it out with Nazis. You read that last part right. Coop's a two-fisted physics professor. The movie is no one's idea of a masterpiece, but it's more fun than your average Lang film (which tended to come in shades of dark and darker).

The series is showing THE BIG HEAT and HUMAN DESIRE, Lang's two films with stars Glenn Ford and Gloria Grahame. The first one is more famous and highly regarded, but I've always rather preferred the second film's bitter take on, well, human desire. The series also features both of Lang's films with Edward G. Robinson and Joan Bennett, THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW and SCARLETT STREET. Both are well worth seeing, but for my money SCARLET STREET is the best film Lang ever made and one of the indispensable noirs.

For more on the series, including a complete list of films they're showing, read here.

Read the Times article here.

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