Billy Wilder
USA 1944
107 min

James M. Cain based his script on an actual case from the 1920s. Double Indemnity tells the story of Walter Neff, the insurance agent (MacMurray) who crosses over and teams up with Phyllis Dietrichson (Stanwyck) to murder her husband and collect on his accident policy. MacMurray appears neither as charmed by her as we are meant to believe, nor as stupid as he had to be to go in on that deal. But he has a great affection for inspector Barton Keyes (Robinson), what is very easy to understand. As much as he respects Keyes, he is also the one who is going to bust the case. It is all pure ingenious and dark, the lighting is of primary importance, especially the interior of Dietrichson's house when she meets Neff there: The slanting and ugly shadows reflect each of their souls. It is once again a story of smoke, and it is one of the most touching scenes to see how Keyes will pay it back, all the sympathy, the friendship, even the tenderness. This all is not reserved for the woman but finally for the man who will bring all this evilness to an end.

  • Edward G. Robinson
  • Fortunio Bonanova
  • Barbara Stanwyck
  • Porter Hall
  • Tom Powers
  • Fred MacMurray
  • Jean Heather
  • Byron Barr
  • Richard Gaines
  • John Philliber
  • Bess Flowers
Joseph Sistrom
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