Community Film Picks: Double Indemnity
Fri, Sep 16, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Bushel is pleased to kick off Community Film Picks with a screening of Billy Wilder’s Double Indemnity (1944), on Friday, September 16, 7 pm (doors at 6:45 pm). This Film Noir classic was picked by Hobart resident Don Thomases who will facilitate a conversation about the film after the screening. This program is free to attend. There is seating for 30; attendance is mask optional.
Starring Barbara Stanwyck, Fred McMurray, and Edward G. Robinson, Double Indemnity is based on a serial magazine story by James M. Cain, and is written for the screen by Raymond Chandler and Wilder. In it, comedy actors were cast against type, and the strict Hollywood censorship that had been in effect since the Hays Code was pushed to its limits; the cynical voice-over narration, dark lighting, the “fatal allure” followed by a downward spiral––all were new devices to Hollywood cinema. The film was a box-office success, received seven Academy Award nominations (winning none), and is often cited as the essential picture in the original American genre of Film Noir.
The director, Billy Wilder, was a monument himself. Born in Austria in 1906, he fled Nazi antisemitism for Hollywood in 1933. Starting as a screenwriter, he went on to direct 50 films, including such classics as Sunset Boulevard and Some Like It Hot. Wilder considered Double Indemnity his best film. Who are we to argue?
Bushel thanks Don Thomases for proposing this film. A retired teacher and past museum docent at the Brooklyn Museum and the Rosenbach Museum (Philadelphia), Don freely admits that he spends much of his time at the movies. He was a student of James Card, the curator of the Eastman House film archives in Rochester, NY. He is presently living with his wife, Julie Rockefeller, in Hobart, the Book Village.
Community Film Picks is a once-a-month film night at Bushel taking place on third Fridays at 7 pm. Bushel invites the community to propose films for future screenings. For information please send us an email.
Every Friday @7pm in October: This & That presents Death-Hi, a series of horror films curated by Matthew Marchese.
Friday, December 17, 7 pm: Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (dir. by Pedro Almodóvar, 1988), picked by Iris Cushing.