Homicide detective Mark McPherson (Dana Andrews) finds himself falling in love with Laura Hunt (Gene Tierney) while he investigates her murder. And if that sounds a little creepy and disturbing, well, it isn't really. Everyone from Laura's mentor (Clifton Webb), to her fiance (Vincent Price), to her maid (Dorothy Adams) describes Laura as being sweet, wonderful, kind, intelligent, charming, and beautiful. The last is confirmed by Laura's portrait in her apartment, which McPherson gets a wee bit obsessed with. But Andrews makes McPherson so sympathetic, so believable and upright and nice himself that you just feel really sorry for him because he can't ever meet this paragon of womanhood and have a chance of wooing her himself.
(One quick note, because I remember my s-i-l being confused by this the first time we watched this: Dana Andrews is the guy and Gene Tierney is the girl. Got it?)
|McPherson studying Laura's portrait|
|Vincent Price, Clifton Webb, and Dana Andrews|
One evening, McPherson goes to Laura's apartment. He gets comfortable, clearly intending to spend a good bit of time investigating. Or something.
|A cigarette, a loose tie, a pretty girl... what more could you need?|
|Can't get away from her, can he?|
|So happy together?|
|This is the expression he makes when the Big Plot Twist arrives. You will too.|
The costumes in this are very nice, as you've seen above. Nobody, but nobody wears a suit or a trench coat like Dana Andrews. Or a fedora.
|Dana Andrews interrogating Vincent Price|
Okay, but enough about Dana. Not that there could ever really be enough about him, but I do need to show you some of Laura's outfits. Remember, we get to see a lot of her in all those flashbacks I mentioned earlier. Here's my second-favorite of her dresses:
|Gene Tierney as Laura Hunt|
But this hat is dopey and makes her look like a wet bunny, IMHO:
Isn't her hair lovely? I wish I could get mine to do that. I'd have to lop off like 3 feet of it, but hey:
And finally, this is my favorite of her ensembles. It's simple and soft and feminine, lacking those big shoulder pads and strict corsets you see in the '40s so much.
Finally, is this movie family-friendly? Depends on the family. We never see the corpse, but McPherson says she was shot in the face with a shotgun, which can conjure up a pretty icky image if you have a powerful imagination. Also, the corpse was clad in a negligee, and it's implied that she had been engaging in illicit activities with a man prior to her death, but nothing is every directly said, so innocent young minds wouldn't suspect anything I don't think. There is also one kiss, and there is another shooting at the end that is pretty suspenseful, but there's no blood shown.