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Double Indemnity

(DVD - 2006 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Double Indemnity
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"A calculating wife encourages her wealthy husband to sign a double indemnity policy proposed by smitten insurance agent Walter Neff. As the would-be lovers plot the unsuspecting husband's murder, they are pursued by a suspicious claims manager. It's a race against time to get away with the perfect crime in this heart-pounding Academy Award-nominated masterpiece"--Container.
Statement of Responsibility: a Paramount picture ; screenplay by Billy Wilder and Raymond Chandler ; directed by Billy Wilder
Title: Double indemnity
[videorecording]
Publisher: Universal City, CA : Universal Studios Home Entertainment, [2006]
Edition: 2-disc special ed
Characteristics: 2 videodiscs (107 min.) : sd., b&w ; 4 3/4 in.
Notes: Originally produced as a motion picture in 1944
Based on the novel: Double indemnity / by James M. Cain
Special features (disc 1): optional audio commentary by film historian Richard Schickel; optional audio commentary by film historians Lem Dobbs & Nick Redman; introduction by film historian Robert Osborne (3 min.); "Shadows of suspense" featurette (c2006, 38 min.); original theatrical trailer (2 min.)
Special features (disc 2): "Double indemnity" made-for-TV movie (a Universal Studios presentation ; starring Richard Crenna, Lee J. Cobb, Robert Webber, Samantha Eggar ; produced by Robert F. O'Neill ; teleplay by Steven Bochco ; based on the screenplay by Billy Wilder and Raymond Chandler ; directed by Jack Smight ; c1973, 75 min.)
Contents: Special features: disc one. 1944 version of Double Indemnity (Full frame version ; Language: English Dolby digital 2.0 mono, Spanish Dolby digital 2.0 mono ; Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French)
Introduction by film historian Robert Osborne
"Shadows of Suspense"
Feature commentary with film historian Richard Schickel
Feature commentary with filmhistorian/screenwriter Lem Dobbs and film historian Nick Redman. disc 2. Double Indemnity (74 min.), 1973 made-for-television movie starring Richard Crenna, based on the 1944 film (Full frame version ; Language: English Dolby digital 2.0 mono ; Subtitles: English SDH, French)
Credits: Director of photography, John Seitz ; editorial supervision, Doane Harrison ; music score, Miklos Rozsa ; costumes by Edith Head.
Performers: Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson, Porter Hall, Jean Heather, Tom Powers, Byron Barr, Richard Gaines, Fortunio Bonanova, John Philliber.
Summary: "A calculating wife encourages her wealthy husband to sign a double indemnity policy proposed by smitten insurance agent Walter Neff. As the would-be lovers plot the unsuspecting husband's murder, they are pursued by a suspicious claims manager. It's a race against time to get away with the perfect crime in this heart-pounding Academy Award-nominated masterpiece"--Container.
Audience: Not rated by the MPAA
System Details: DVD, region 1; Dolby digital mono; NTSC; full frame
Other Language: In English or dubbed Spanish; with optional French or Spanish subtitles
Subject Headings: Insurance agents United States Drama Adultery United States Drama Double indemnity United States Drama Insurance investigators United States Drama Film noir Thriller Feature. migfg
Genre/Form: Feature films
Film noir
Thrillers (Motion pictures, television, etc.)
Thriller-Feature
Thrillers (Motion pictures)
Fiction films
Film adaptations
Television movies
Video recordings for the hearing impaired
Suspense films
Feature films
Film noir
Thrillers (Motion pictures, television, etc.)
Topical Term: Insurance agents
Adultery
Double indemnity
Insurance investigators
Film noir
Thriller
Additional Contributors: Chandler, Raymond - 1888-1959
Wilder, Billy - 1906-2002
MacMurray, Fred - 1908-1991
Stanwyck, Barbara - 1907-1990
Robinson, Edward G. - 1893-1973
Hall, Porter - 1888-1953
Heather, Jean
Powers, Tom - 1890-1955
Barr, Byron - 1917-1966
Gaines, Richard - 1904-1975
Bonanova, Fortunio - 1895-1969
Philliber, John - 1872-1944
Seitz, John F. - 1892-1979 - (John Francis),
Harrison, Doane - 1894-1968
Rózsa, Miklós - 1907-1995
Head, Edith
Schickel, Richard
Dobbs, Lem
Redman, Nick
O'Neill, Robert F. - 1921-
Smight, Jack
Bochco, Steven
Crenna, Richard - 1927-2003
Cobb, Lee J. - 1911-1976
Webber, Robert - 1924-1989
Eggar, Samantha
Cain, James M. - 1892-1977 - (James Mallahan),
Paramount Pictures, Inc
Universal Studios Home Entertainment (Firm)
Publisher No: 29078
ISBN: 1417072512
Branch Call Number: DVD MOVIE D
MARC Display»

From the critics


Library Staff

List - Film Noir 101 by: nypl_mid_manhattan Aug 18, 2012

Double Indemnity (1944, 107 min) is directed by Billy Wilder and stars Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, and Edward G. Robinson. The script was co-written by Raymond Chandler. Originally released by Paramount Pictures on April 24, 1944.


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Jul 05, 2014
  • Fleur24 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is a true masterpiece. An amazing film noir directed by the great Billy Wilder. Every moment of this film is captivating. If you like Film Noir, then you will most likely love this. It is captivating from beginning to end. The black and white is stunningly beautiful!! Hands down, this is a Must See.

Jul 02, 2014
  • garycornell rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Great movies like Double Indemnity take a great director, in this case Billy Wilder. He then puts together a great cast and production team. I am here to tell you that these people made one of Hollywood's finest movies. It is thrilling, chilling and darn right entertaining. A Big Five Star Classic with emotional punch. Few movies punch as good as Double Indemnity!

Jun 12, 2014
  • Isley rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Masterpiece of film noir that really is as good as everyone says. Still, though a master and a genius, there is something about Billy Wilder that doesn’t quite click with me, though, I'm not sure what it is--he’s definitely cynical enough.

Apr 05, 2014
  • mapmusic17 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

5 Stars. One of the all time greats. The stars have never been better. Grab it now OR ELSE.

Dec 08, 2013
  • theorbys rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Impeccably made, and unforgetable.

Oct 22, 2013
  • Bazooka_Joe rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Released in 1944 - Double Indemnity's story of vicious betrayal may be somewhat flawed and inconsistent. - And, its 3 principal actors may have been miscast (especially Barbara Stanwyck as the deceitfully wicked femme fatale in a cheap-looking wig) - But, overall, it's quite easy to see why this vintage, Hollywood Crime/Drama is considered to be a true "classic" of 1940s Film Noir._____ Containing plenty of loaded dialogue, dim, shadowy settings, and flashes of well-timed tension, Double Indemnity's story of murder and deception comes together quite nicely as the scattered pieces of its plot-line eventually all fit into one like that of a master jigsaw puzzle._____ Fred MacMurray plays Walter Neff, an over-confident, but naively gullible insurance salesman, who, thinking that he's got it all figured out, gets played for a prize sucker when the seductive, well-to-do Mrs. Dietrichson snares him into a diabolical plot to kill her husband in order to collect $100,000 through the double indemnity clause in his life insurance policy._____ Filmed in glossy b&w, Double Indemnity's story was co-written by the famed crime-novelist Raymond Chandler. It was directed by Billy Wilder, known for such films as Sunset Boulevard and Some Like It Hot.

Feb 22, 2013
  • d1967 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Edward G Robinson is perhaps the best movie star ever !

Jan 29, 2013
  • viguyy rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

One of the masterful grand daddies of Film Noir. The first of many great masterpieces to follow from one of Hollywood's greatest talents, Billy Wilder. This film became a blue-print for many new fresh ideas in Hollywood film making.

The script was written by Wilder & Raymond Chandler & crackled with sharp double on-tundra quips deliciously delivered by both the lead actors Fred MacMurray & Barbara Stanwyck. As the story goes no one else wanted to play the roles in this seedy morally corrupt caper. But as fate would have it both Stanwyck & MacMurray were perfect for the parts & did some of their very best work on screen. I would also be remiss in not mentioning the great Edward G. Robinson's performance as Keyes, the claims manager who is the detective in this noir classic. What is really fascinating is the uniquely nuanced relationships amongst the leads. Particularly Robinson's & MacMurrays characters who clearly respect & care very much for one another. Perhaps they love each other as colleagues & friends. And what is the real story between Stanwyck's & MacMurray? Do they love each other? It seems not, right up to the final scene when thay are together. We never will really know. Brilliant stuff!

Along with the legendary photography of one John Seitz who really developed the noir style with this picture. With it's high contrast scenes, to it's sharp edged shadows & interesting angles & composition Seitz helped create a look that is a classic & has been copied countless times in films to follow.

The film is unique & brilliant in it's detail. It's brilliant in its cold characters, it's more realistic portrayal of the personal frailties & greed of our species. It stripped back the layers of naivety & reveled a much more cynical & raw realism that was certainly cutting edge when the film was released to an appreciative audience in 1944.

Like many of the great films one viewing is not enough to fully appreciate this films brilliance & artistry. Double indemnity is surely one of the great Hollywood films of all time.

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

(Two disc set) ** (1944) Billy Wilder's (and Raymond Chandler's) noir masterpiece, based on James M. Cain's pulp novel, that epitomizes the genre (and effectively then legitimized it from its previously seedy reputation). The likeable Fred MacMurray (he had a 'good' face) is razor sharp, cool as a cucumber... (I counted 28 "baby"s from him! lol). Barbara Stanwyck's femme fatale, and her far-away eyes, is hypnotic, sultry... (except for that straw hat on her head that was supposed to be a wig). Edward G. Robinson was on fire as the omnipotent (obsessive/compulsive) insurance claims manager, delivering rapid fire debate. Devious scheming/double crossing; malevolent lighting/photography/score... "Perfect. Straight down the line." FIVE STARS. ** (1973) A Steven Bochco made for TV remake. Atrocious. Un-stylized, run of the mill, tele-crap. An insult to the original. You 'botched' it, Mr. Bochco.

Apr 27, 2012
  • aaa5756 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Very well done movie I would recommend this movie for all to see. No fast forwarding on this one.

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Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Walter Neff (voiceover): "That was all there was to it. Nothing had slipped, nothing had been overlooked.There was nothing to give us away. And yet, Keyes, as I was walking down the street to the drugstore, suddenly, it came over me that everything would go wrong. It sounds crazy Keyes, but it's true, so help me. ...I couldn't hear my own footsteps. It was the walk of a dead man."

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Edward S. Norton: "There's a widespread feeling that just because a man has a large office he must be an idiot."

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Walter Neff (voiceover): "How could I have known that murder could sometimes smell like honeysuckle?"

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Walter Neff: "Look baby, you can't get away with it. You wanna knock him off, don'tcha." Phyllis Dietrichson: "That's a horrible thing to say." Walter Neff: "Who'd you think I was anyway? The guy that walks into a good looking dame's front parlor and says, "Good afternoon, I sell accident insurance on husbands... you got one that's been around too long? One you'd like to turn into a little hard cash?" Just gimme a smile and I'll help you collect? Boy, what a dope you must think I am." Phyllis Dietrichson: "I think you're rotten." Walter Neff: "I think you're swell -- so long as I'm not your husband." Phyllis Dietrichson: "Get out of here." Walter Neff: "You bet I'll get out of here, baby. I'll get out of here, but quick."

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Phyllis Dietrichson: "Nettie, show Mr. Neff into the living room." Walter Neff: "Where would the living room be?" Nettie: "In there, but they keep the liquor locked up." Walter Neff: "That's alright, I always carry my own keys..."

Dec 17, 2012
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Walter Neff (voiceover): "...Yes, I killed him. I killed him for money -- and a woman. ...And I didn't get the money, and I didn't get the woman. Pretty, isn't it?"

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Double Indemnity Trailer

Double Indemnity Trailer

Walter and Phyllis meet

An insurance salesman calls on a customer's wife about a renewal, but she is sizing him up for a project of her own, like getting her husband an accident insurance policy that he never knows about. She plans to collect on that policy soon.

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