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Niagara is Marilyn Munro's first color film, a Technicolor noir in fact, and she's so resplendent, it was then in her contract that she couldn't ever appear again in black and white (Some Like It Hot the one exception, but it WAS shot in color - making the boys in drag look monstrous apparently). Gorgeous though she is, she also shows range by playing a femme fatale that's both hard as nails, and haunted and vulnerable, a woman trying to get her boyfriend to kill her husband at everyone's favorite honeymoon destination: Niagara Falls. The location is very well used, not just as backdrop and opportunity for visual beauty and dangerous waters, but for its symbolic resonance as well. In those most powerful of falls, we find the plot's deadly inevitability, and Munroe's turmoil and beauty both. It's very well done, though once the worst has happened, I don't much care for the tagged-on action sequence. Or rather, everything I care about is done. Still, Jean Peters makes a good heroine in those scenes.
Better thanks expected. See for yourself, and made your own opinion.
Clunky melodrama only raised out of the ordinary by the spectacular setting of the Niagara Falls and some decent noir-ish colour cinematography. Monroe looks great, but doesn't entirely convince as a murderous adulteress, whereas Jean Peters is much more interesting as the innocent newlywed drawn into intrigue and murder. Max Showalter gives one of the most terrible cheesy screen performances as her husband though: he's absolutely awful. The climax where Joseph Cotten attempts an ill thought out escape is over the top (literally) but memorable. One for the Monroe completists.
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In 3 official lists
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This movie ranks #88 in TSPDT 100 Essential Noir Films
This movie ranks #88 in TSPDT 1000 Noir Films
This movie ranks #542 in Halliwell's Top 1000: The Ultimate Movie Countdown