Diabolique (1955)

DIABOLIQUE (1955)
(a.k.a. LES DIABOLIQUES)
Article #1536 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-29-2005
Posting Date: 10-26-2005
Directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot
Featuring Simone Signoret, Vera Clouzot, Paul Meurisse

A man’s wife and his mistress conspire together to murder him.

This suspense thriller is considered a classic, and rightly so. However, it is also rather widely known, and over the years I’ve heard enough about it and its influence that the movie didn’t hold a lot of surprises to me. In particular, knowing that this movie was influential on one specific director and having had access to several of that director’s movies (some of which borrow heavily from DIABOLIQUE) was enough to clue me off on several crucial plot points.

Writing about movies like this without engaging in spoilers is also a nightmare; even slight, subtle hints have the potential to give things away. Therefore, I’ll just say this; if you haven’t seen the movie and haven’t heard much about it and all, you’d be best off watching it now before you learn more. This is one movie that thrives on surprise, and to say more would be to give things away. Suffice it to say that the movie does move into the realm of horror before all is said and done, and thus does qualify as genre.

And, to the movies credit, the final moment of the movie does have one last surprise that I didn’t see coming.

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