Friday, September 12, 2008
Oh, The Horror! #3: Norma Desmond (In Sunset Blvd)
"I am big! It's the pictures that got small!" belts Norma Desmond, portrayed by the late great Gloria Swanson in 1950's Sunset Boulevard. Okay, so this movie isn't a horror movie, but for the people who's seen this movie can all agree that Norma Desmond, the aging actress who's in denial of her faded spotlight is just downright creepy. Now, for the people who hasn't seen this movie: what the frag is wrong with you?! Go and buy it right now! This is a classic that should be on everyone's DVD collection!
William Holden stars in this movie as Joe Gillis, a struggling screenwriter in Hollywood. His car is about to be towed due to missing his payments and struggles to get the cash for it. He tries to hide the car inside of a garage after a car chase from those pesky folks who won't leave him alone for his car and meets the woman who owns that great big mansion where he parked it. The actress is non-other than the great Norma Desmond, a big time actress from the silent film era. Or "used to be" big shot. But don't tell her that! She's a star, it's just that the pictures got too small! Before Gillis can leave, he is forced to read Desmond's screenplay of Salome, a story of a young princess who Desmond has envision with her in the starring role. Reluctant at first, Gillis sees the opportunity to finally get some money as Desmond begins to spoil him with many things, including her growing desire for him. Her love and desire for him begins to becoming very disturbing as the cold-hearted actress becomes even more creepy given her already scary mindset of now being a fallen actress. This is certainly a movie that has held up through the ways and is still a blast to see, especially seeing the characters go through a spiral, maybe a way of warning me, an aspiring director/actor, about the Hollywood biz. Sheesh.
But anyways, if you haven't seen this movie, go pick it up now and enjoy the it from beginning to the very last line that's become a classic in cinema, "... All right, Mr. DeMille, I'm ready for my close-up."