The Man on the Eiffel Tower

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The Man on the Eiffel Tower

Post by Bruce R on Tue Nov 14, 2017 6:35 pm

The 1949 noir, THE MAN ON THE EIFFEL TOWER, was supposedly released in "eye-pleasing" Anscocolor but is nowadays available in washed-out public-domain prints (which is certainly what I viewed and perhaps colored--no put intended--my enjoyment of this film).  There is obviously some disagreement about what the rating of this film should be as Keaney gives it a high 3.5, while it languishes at 5.8 on IMDb.  I'm closer to the IMDb rating than Keaney's 3.5.

It stars Charles Laughton as Inspector Maigret, Franchot Tone, Burgess Meredith (who also directed), Robert Hutton, Jean Wallace and Patricia Roc.  Laughton is excellent as Maigret, Tone is fine as the psychotic killer (this is shown early on so is not really a spoiler) but I found Meredith annoying.  Perhaps he was too distracted with his directing duties.

Hutton hires Tone to kill his wealthy aunt as he needs money now to pay off his wife and marry his mistress.  Meredith is tired of being nagged by his wife and just after the aunt is offed, winds up in her apartment with burglary on his mind, stumbles, loses his glasses (the thickness of Coke bottles) and winds up leaving his bloody fingerprints everywhere as he tries to find the exit.

Laughton investigates but quickly surmises that Meredith is not the real killer.  Tone starts hanging around with Laughton, somewhat taunting him about not being able to find the killer.  And so a cat-and-mouse game ensues.

It's enjoyable enough, but I don't see it as a top-end noir.

There's a copy on YouTube if want to view it or evaluate washed-out Anscocolor for yourself:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdn_kFtsGXc

Bruce R

Bruce R

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