Dark Passage

dark passageFinally caught Delmer Daves’ 1947 film noir, Dark Passage starring Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. The two had been together three years by the time they shot this film. Bogart was 48 and Bacall  just a meer 23. Yikes that means she was 20 when they met. Dark Passage is classic 40’s film noir at its finest even with the flaws and errors. A bit of camp, a lot of suspense, and no one shines brighter in Dark Passage than supporting actor Agnes Moorehead. Tired Old Queen Steve Hayes puts it best,

Oscar Oversights: AGNES MOOREHEAD. Nominated four times as Best Supporting Actress; “The Magnificent Ambersons” (1942), “Mrs. Parkington”(1944), “Johnny Belinda”(1948) and “Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte(1964).”

My personal favorite Aggie performance is as the evil vixen Madge Rapf in “Dark Passage” (1947) where she taunts, berates and holds her own against Humphrey Bogart before taking a high dive out a plate glass window. Watching those two square off is like watching a heavyweight championship. Perfection!

I loved Aggie’s subtle entrance in the film, knocking on Bacall’s apartment door in San Francisco. Then walking away with Bogart looking at her through the blinds. Her outfit was insane – leopard print. I can’t believe they wasted that outfit on one small take, but what an entrance it made and of course foreshadowed her evil role which would be revealed at the end of the film.

Classic, campy, tense, and so much fun. Dark Passage gets a 4 out of 5.

Agnes Moorehead's entrance in Dark Passage.  You're welcome.

Agnes Moorehead’s entrance in Dark Passage.
You’re welcome.


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