MASKERADE (Willi Forst, 1934)

A legendary film, Willi Forst’s Maskerade lives up to its exalted reputation. A Viennese operetta, it takes place in 1905, beginning with an extravagant high-society carnival party, full of music and dance and romantic rivalry, and ending amidst falling snow at night, a window glimpsing in on a tender moment of love. It is all […]

THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM (Otto Preminger, 1955)

Frank Sinatra and Eleanor Parker are not among my favorite film stars; normally, both are emotionally thin, morose, depressive—in Sinatra’s case, even in romantic musical-comedies. But, giving their finest, most compelling performances, they are terrific as Frankie and Zosch Machine, the newly ex-con/struggling ex-druggie and his wheelchair-bound manipulative wife, in separate quarters in a southside […]