Flamingo Road

Flamingo Road

DVD - 2008
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A determined carnival dancer, an aspiring politician and a malevolent manipulator of public figures form the basis of this drama.
Publisher: Burbank, CA. : Warner Home Video, [2008]
ISBN: 9781419852404
Branch Call Number: DVD
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (94 min.) : sd., b&w ; 4 3/4 in


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Jan 24, 2016

I read in a biography that Joan Crawford was not proud of this movie. Yes, she did look too old for the part but she was still very alluring and magnetic on the screen. You can't keep your eyes off her. I did like this movie a lot the first time I saw it but it seemed to lose my interest the second time. However, I caught up to a very integral part of the plot which I somehow missed the first time I watched it! It is an interesting movie, and it does have a few surprises up its sleeve. Also, Sydney Greenstreet's character is so evil. I don't understand why he is never mentioned among the most villainous in cinema history. He plays a despicable man! A lot of the smaller character parts were very entertaining, especially Doc Waterston. I couldn't help but have sympathy for Field's character. Something seemed to be missing from David Brian's performance. I don't think his acting was quite up to the calibre of the others.

Dec 13, 2014

“There’s a Flamingo Road in every town...” intones a faceless narrator at the beginning of this wonderfully over baked noir soap, “...it is the street of social success...the avenue of achievement...the golden goal for all who struggle and aspire to reach the top...” And thus begins the odyssey of Lane Bellamy, a down-on-her-luck carnival girl who finds herself stranded in the small southern town of Bolden. Michael Curtiz’s brooding potboiler casts a critical eye on America’s faith in democracy; his politicos are portrayed as spineless toadies for sale to whichever alpha male happens to be in the room, whether it’s a slimy southern cop with a drawer full of dirty secrets, or a self-interested businessman with an aggressive attitude and violent temper. Representing the common man (and woman) caught up in this bureaucratic maelstrom, Lane goes from powerless victim flinching at every blow to indignant avenger who’s fed up and not going to take it anymore. Joan Crawford’s ballsy performance is pure joy to watch especially since the script gives her some of the film’s snappier lines; her piercing eyes and chiseled features registering teary heartbreak or spitting rage with consummate skill. But it is Sydney Greenstreet’s portrayal of the quintessential backdoor slimeball, Titus Semple, that steals the show; his doughy features and rotund body encasing a heart of pure Machiavellian evil. Add to that some wonderfully brooding B&W camerawork paired with a suitably dramatic score, and you have a true golden oldie!


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