The Good Place
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On the face, this is a film about Christmas novelty music, but it's actually an exploration of loneliness and eventual embacing of one's uniqueness and identity. It's been an annual event since my first screening.
This fantastic Nick Ray crime film starts as gritty as anything in the genre that you're likely to find, but abruptly switches gears roughly halfway through. Once Ida Lupino's character is introduced, elements of melodrama are introduced while retaining the same noir visuals that make the first half such a kick in a gut. The result is something far more tragic than one is likely to find in traditional genre cinema. Playing foil to Robert Ryan's burnt out cop, the prototype for all archetypes to come after, is the great Ward Bond, cast against type, he's all feral and rage, and displays far more range than one will on display in his John Ford pictures.