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Double Indemnity

Billy Wilder
USA 1944 / 107’

Double Indemnity is a classic in the film noir genre and a classic film in the history of American cinema as a whole. A story of deadly love, betrayal and cold-blooded murder committed by a discontented rich housewife and an insurance agent, it has all the hallmarks of film noir – first person narration by the protagonist, retrospection, urban decay, desire linked with violence, disillusionment with the American dream and a pervasively gloomy atmosphere. At the center stands the archetypal femme fatale character – a cold and calculating platinum blonde who exploits male desire to elicit murderous instincts for her own gain. Wilder and co-writer Raymond Chandler wrote a brilliant script, whose dialogue abounds in dark irony and cynical wit.

Patrycja Włodek

Billy Wilder

Billy Wilder, one of the most important directors in the history cinema, noted writer and producer, was born in 1906, in the town of Sucha in the Austro-Hungarian Empire (present-day Sucha Beskidzka in Poland). After studying law, he opted for a career in journalism. Moving to Berlin, he became an assistant screenwriter. Hitler’s rise to power convinced Wilder to emigrate, first to France and then the United States. Moving behind the camera, he went on to work with the brightest actors of Hollywood’s Golden Age, winning six Oscars and top awards at Cannes and Venice. Wilder passed away in 2002.

Filmography

1934 Złe nasienie / Mauvaise graine / Bad Seed

1942 Major i mała / The Major and the Minor

1943 Pięć grobów na drodze do Kairu / Five Graves to Cairo

1944 Podwójne ubezpieczenie / Double Indemnity

1945 Młyny śmierci / Death Mills (dok., kr. m. / doc., short)

1945 Stracony weekend / The Lost Weekend

1948 Cesarski walc / The Emperor Waltz

1948 Sprawy zagraniczne / A Foreign Affair

1950 Bulwar Zachodzącego Słońca / Sunset Blvd.

1951 As w potrzasku / Ace in the Hole

1953 Stalag 17

1954 Sabrina

1955 Słomiany wdowiec / The Seven Year Itch

1957 W duchu St. Louis / The Spirit of St. Louis

1957 Miłość po południu / Love in the Afternoon

1957 Świadek oskarżenia / Witness for the Prosecution

1959 Pół żartem, pół serio / Some Like It Hot

1960 Garsoniera / The Apartment

1961 Raz, dwa, trzy / One, Two, Three

1963 Słodka Irma / Irma la Douce

1964 Pocałuj mnie, głuptasie / Kiss Me, Stupid

1966 Szczęście Harry’ego / The Fortune Cookie

1970 Prywatne życie Sherlocka Holmesa / The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes

1972 Avanti!

1974 Strona tytułowa / The Front Page

1978 Fedora

1981 Najlepszy kumpel / Buddy Buddy

Cast & Crew

director Billy Wilder
screenplay Billy Wilder, Raymond Chandler; na podstawie powieści Jamesa M. Caina / based on a novel by James M. Cain
cinematography John F. Seitz
editing Doane Harrison
music Miklós Rózsa
cast Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson, Porter Hall, Jean Heather
producer Joseph Sistrom
production Paramount Pictures
sales NBC Universal
language English
colouration b&w