Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Too Late for Tears (1949) Review SPOILER ALERT

This movie poster showcases a hard to watch scene that was iconic to the film.
This classic film noir directed by Byron Haskin features a cast of actors I've never come across before. The premise seems very simple at first. A bag of $60,000 is mistakenly dropped into the back of a married couple's convertible and the man it was meant for (Don DeFore) comes after them to get his dough back. What's unusual is the wife's reaction to the money (Lizabeth Scott).

Jane Palmer (Lizbeth Scott) showing her husband what was in the suitcase mistakenly dropped into their car.

***Spoilers Begin Now***

I was quite shocked how easily the wife changed from a nervous, seemingly good wife to such a ruthless killer. No one and nothing is more important to her than the money, that's including her husband whom she seemed to genuinely love even up to the fateful boat ride. In order to keep the money she allowed herself to flirt with and kiss another man, kill her husband, kill the other man who came after her for the money, and plot to kill her sister-in-law.

Jane Palmer ruthlessly killing her husband
I'll admit she was pretty smart for most of the plot, but what was really jarring and out of place for me was her innocent and genuine smile. Perhaps it was done on purpose to show a new style of femme fatale or perhaps the actor didn't give a quite perfect performance. However, I still liked it- in that it caused the movie to be different. I especially enjoyed Lizbeth Scott's voice. It was very reminiscent of Lauren Bacall's.

An example of the same smile Lizbeth Scott used in this film
In the end, the title was very fitting. She made decisions so fast she didn't have time to cry over what she had done or feel any remorse for the murders she committed. I think this is a very entertaining movie. Let me know in the comments what you think of it!