Saturday, 15 July 2017

Capital Celluloid 2017 - Day 211: Tue Aug 1

Key Largo (Huston, 1948): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 8.50pm


This 35mm screening is part of the Big Screen Classics season at BFI Southbank. Here are the details of the season. Key Largo is also being screened on August 19th. Details here.

Time Out review:
Reworking of a Maxwell Anderson play about a gangster under threat of deportation who holes up with his henchmen in a semi-derelict hotel on an island off Florida, holding the occupants at gunpoint and remaining blind to the menace posed by a coming hurricane. The debt to The Petrified Forest is obvious, but instead of wallowing in world-weary pseudo-philosophy, Key Largo has altogether sharper things to say about post-war disillusionment, corruption in politics, and the fact that the old freebooting ways of the gangster were about to change into something more sinisterly complex. John Huston skilfully breaks up the action (basically one set and one continuous scene), working subtle variations on his groupings with the aid of superb deep-focus camera-work by Karl Freund. And although the characters are basically stereotypes, they are lent the gift of life by a superlative cast: Edward G Robinson as the truculent Little Caesar, Humphrey Bogart as an embittered ex-Army officer, Lauren Bacall as the innocent who loves him, and above all Claire Trevor as the gangster's disillusioned, drink-sodden moll.
Tom Milne

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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