I decided that today I was going to watch my first film of the AFI 10 Top 10 Challenge. I found Laura, which had an intriguing premise, was in a genre I liked, and just happened to be on Netflix. I had never heard of Laura before, but it was directed by Otto Preminger, who I was aware of because of him working with Dalton Trumbo while Trumbo was blacklisted. These things along with AFI ranking it as the 4th best mystery film and a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes, I was hooked.
Laura to me was very reminiscent of Citizen Kane in terms of its storytelling. There was an investigation in the (then) present and then flashbacks to deliver the backstory. Only, whereas I found Citizen Kane to be slow at times and have a pointless ending (Rosebud was really that!!!), I felt that Laura was very interesting. The writing was amazing. The plot kept me constantly guessing with a big, unexpected twist that came in the middle that threw off my theory.
The acting was great. My favorite actor was Clifton Webb as Waldo who delivered some lines that should be considered iconic. Gene Tierney was also great as the eponymous Laura, stealing the show every time she is on screen.
Laura was an excellent movie in my opinion. It constantly enthralled me and succeeded in everything that a mystery film should. It is an example of film noir in its finest, and definitely earned its spot in the AFI's Top 10 Mystery Films. I think that it may even rival some of the greats like Vertigo to be one of the best movies I have ever seen.
Big Tuna's Rating: A+
How Did I Watch It?: Netflix.
Had I Seen It Before?: No.
Would I Watch It Again?: Yes.
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I look at films as if through old red and blue 3D glasses— one lens is as art, one lens is as entertainment.
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