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Bad Girls of Film Noir, Vol. 2: (Disc 2 of 2) Women's Prison / Over-Exposed back to product details

Film noir and the unmarried professional woman
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written by king2clio March 30, 2010 - 4:24 PM PDT
Over-Exposed and Women's Prison make an interesting pairing, not just for their film noir elements, but also for their obvious discomfort with successful unmarried professional women in the 1940s. Ida Lupina, who could portray characters ranging from a naive innocent to a femme fatale, takes on the role of a cold, sadistic, and mentally unstable warden of a women's prison (whom compassionate physician-- and real life husband -- Howard Duff diagnoses as psychologically damaged by absence of love). In Overexposed, Cleo Moore's character plays a well-trained and gifted photographer, but her career rests on a foundation of blackmail and ruthless ambition, until she trims her goals and marries a good man. Along with these lessons in approved gender roles for the 1940s, the films offer quick-moving plots and other charms (like the odd portrayal of female prisoners as declasse' sorority sisters exhibiting great solidarity and no internal conflicts). I recommend these films for fans of B-move "women's pictures" and noir films, since these two movies straddle the two genres.

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(Average 4.67)
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