12 August 2010
Touch of Evil (1958)
Your future's all used up.
So basically: On a Mexico-US border town, a car blows up with a rich American developer inside. Mexican narcotics officer, Miguel Vargas, is honeymooning in the town and soon becomes involved when a Mexican national is accused of the crime. To further his involvement, Miguel goes up against the officer in charge, Captain Hank Quinlan, to try and expose his corruption, putting his wife in danger.
I'm sorry, but I can't like this movie. The story is boring, the characters are uninteresting, the acting is mediocre. I know, I know, it's Orson Welles! He's a genius, isn't he? Well, that's what I grew up thinking, so I was really disappointed in this film. The direction, too, isn't good, either. He uses too many weird angles. Some are useful for dramatic effect, but when every other cut is from a dynamic angle it looses it's oomph power. The conflict between Heston and Welles' characters, also, don't build up very well and the pacing is much too slow. Also, wtf? Isn't Charlton Heston's character supposed to be Mexican? Could Welles find a more American actor to play him? Or better yet, how about actually using a Mexican/Hispanic actor for the part? I guess since it's from 1958? I dunno.
I'd say watch this film for Merlene Dietrich's stunning performance, but her part is too small to make it worth the hour and forty-five minutes. It so does not deserve to be on the list.
Ziggi seal of disapproval!