The Black Dahlia

The Black Dahlia

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The Black Dahlia
An LA crime/noir story based on the book by 'LA Confidential' writer Ellroy, and directed by legend Brian de Palma.<br /><br />True story: in LA, 1947, the murdered body of a beautiful young woman named Elizabeth Short was found in a vacant lot off Crenshaw. She was cut in half, disemboweled, drained of all blood and cruelly marked. The discovery stunned the city, but the killer was never found.<br /><br />Not a true story: Ellroy's fictional take on the mystery. "It was typical Ellroy, who blamed the ghastly murder not on a deranged psychopath but rather police corruption, political chicanery, ruthless gangsters and various businessmen. In other words, the city killed Elizabeth. Like any of his crackling crime tales, Ellroy surrounds historical events with fiendishly dark fictional characters. The cops on the case are Bucky Bleichert (Hartnett) and Lee Blanchard (Eckhart), ex-boxers who become partners on the beat and off. Bucky finds himself in an unconsummated menage with Lee and his live-in lover, Kay Lake (Johansson)" [Hollywood Reporter].
116 minsGermany, USA
CrimeDramaMysteryThriller
Director:
Brian De Palma ('Femme Fatale', 'Mission: Impossible', 'Snake Eyes', 'Scarface', 'The Untouchables')
Writer:
Josh Friedman
Cast:
Josh HartnettScarlett JohanssonAaron EckhartHilary SwankMia Kirshner
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Reviews & comments

Variety

Variety

press

"Chinatown" it ain't, not in any department. On its own level, however, new pic generates a reasonable degree of intrigue...

0
Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

Has the looks, smarts and attitude of a classic Brian De Palma/film noir thriller. During the first hour, the hope that the director has tapped into something really great mounts with each passing minute. Then, gradually, the feverish pulp imagination of James Ellroy, on whose novel Josh Friedman based his screenplay, feeds into De Palma's dark side. The violence grows absurd, emotions get overplayed, and the film revels once too often in its gleeful depiction of corrupt, decadent old Los Angeles. Disappointingly, the film edges dangerously into camp...

0
Film Threat

Film Threat

press

It looks stylish, sure, but the script is laughable and the acting is ridiculous...

1.0
0
Empire Magazine

Empire Magazine

press

Gorgeously realised, gripping and doused in De Palma’s familiar technical wizardry, this is only let down by the director’s equally familiar uninterest in the humanity of his characters...

3.0
0
BBC

BBC

press

It only works in fits and starts and the grand climax is too Rocky Horror to be true, yet the heady redolence of a bygone era still proves seductive...

3.0
0
Variety

Variety

press

"Chinatown" it ain't, not in any department. On its own level, however, new pic generates a reasonable degree of intrigue...

0
Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

Has the looks, smarts and attitude of a classic Brian De Palma/film noir thriller. During the first hour, the hope that the director has tapped into something really great mounts with each passing minute. Then, gradually, the feverish pulp imagination of James Ellroy, on whose novel Josh Friedman based his screenplay, feeds into De Palma's dark side. The violence grows absurd, emotions get overplayed, and the film revels once too often in its gleeful depiction of corrupt, decadent old Los Angeles. Disappointingly, the film edges dangerously into camp...

0
Film Threat

Film Threat

press

It looks stylish, sure, but the script is laughable and the acting is ridiculous...

1.0
0
Empire Magazine

Empire Magazine

press

Gorgeously realised, gripping and doused in De Palma’s familiar technical wizardry, this is only let down by the director’s equally familiar uninterest in the humanity of his characters...

3.0
0
BBC

BBC

press

It only works in fits and starts and the grand climax is too Rocky Horror to be true, yet the heady redolence of a bygone era still proves seductive...

3.0
0

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