Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1950s In A Lonely Place (1950)

In A Lonely Place (1950)

Humphrey Bogart is Dixon Steele, an embittered and washed-up Hollywood screenwriter who pays a hat-check girl to help out with a script read-through one night.

When she’s found dead the next morning, Steele comes under suspicion until his actor neighbour, Laurel (Gloria Grahame), gives him an alibi.

Dix and Laurel fall in love but police suspicion sours the affair, as well as Dix’s violent temper which alarms Laurel.

She agrees to marry him, but after he attacks his agent Mel (Art Smith), she plans to leave him and he attacks her.

Even though the real murderer confesses they split up, their relationship destroyed by Dix’s violence.

The story of a woman slowly coming to suspect that her partner is a murderer harkens back to 1940s melodramas such as Suspicion (1941) and Gaslight (1944), but the way the relationship is depicted here is much more nuanced and adult – more frightening in its barely contained violence.

Film noir isn’t always as dark as it’s cracked up to be, but Nicholas Ray’s In a Lonely Place is one film where the desolation cuts to the bone.

Dixon ‘Dix’ Steele
Humphrey Bogart
Laurel Gray
Gloria Grahame
Brub Nicolai
Frank Lovejoy
Captain Lochner
Carl Benton Reid
Mel Lippman
Art Smith
Sylvia Nicolai
Jeff Donnell
Mildred Atkinson
Martha Stewart
Charlie Waterman
Robert Warwick
Lloyd Barnes
Morris Ankrum
Ted Barton
William Ching
Steven Geray
Lewis Howard
Frances Randolph
Alice Talton
Ruth Warren
Henry Kesler
Jack Reynolds
Ruth Gillette
Dr Richards
David Bond
Guy Beach
Mike Romanoff
Arno Frey

Nicholas Ray

Humphrey Bogart
Gloria Grahame
Frank Lovejoy
Carl Benton Reid