Graham's Review of Gilda
A film steeped in Casablanca, but no-where near as good.
The plot is ludicrous and quite often boring(tungston cartel anyone?) It is the performances that keep this afloat. Hayworth is smoking hot as the eponymous temptress, but it is not a pleasant character. The film is oozing misogyny. Gilda, the character, is seemingly a metaphor for all womenkind. Whores who drive men mad and cause havoc wherever they are. I think the writer has mommy issues!
As a post war film, there must be the requisite evil Germans, but they are such downplayed bad guys, especially compared to Ballin Mundson, luciously played by George Macready. It is Macready that steals the show for me here. A man full of hate, but thriving on it. HIs relationship with Johnny and Gilda, for it does play like a strange threeway, is a powder keg waiting to explode. Sadly it just all gets a bit messy. After an odd plot twist where Ballin fakes his own death, the Gilda abuse just fires up even more. So much so, that I really didn't buy the neat ending.
An entertaining watch though for the performances and the homoerotic nuances between Ballin and Johnny. It's gorgeous to look at too. The entire film seems to take place at night as all are turned out in beautiful eveningwear. Rita Hayworth's hair should have a place in the cast. It really is one of the stars when she dances.