12 octobre 1944. Le passant cinéphile est abasourdi. Un critique du New York Times a osé écrire que Gene Tierney n’était pas à la hauteur dans le dernier film d’Otto Preminger, Laura. Direction le cinéma le plus proche pour se faire sa propre idée. Et se fendre d’une lettre bien salée à ce T.M.P. histoire de lui apprendre son métier.
Critique d’époque :
« When a murder mystery possessing as much sustained suspense, good acting and caustically brittle dialogue as Laura, which opened yesterday at the Roxy, comes along it might seem a little like carping to suggest that it could have been even better. As the story of a strangely fascinating female who insinuates herself into the lives of three very worldly gents, much depends, of course, upon the lady herself. This is made quite evident in the beginning of the story when considerable interest and curiosity is generated over the murder of Laura Hunt, and the two rivals for her affections make quite a to do about her intriguing attributes to an inquiring detective.
Yes, you get the idea that this Laura must have been something truly wonderful. Now, at the risk of being unchivalrous, we venture to say that when the lady herself appears upon the scene via a flashback of events leading up to the tragedy, she is a disappointment. For Gene Tierney simply doesn’t measure up to the word-portrait of her character. Pretty, indeed, but hardly the type of girl we had expected to meet. For Miss Tierney plays at being a brilliant and sophisticated advertising executive with the wild-eyed innocence of a college junior.
Aside from that principal reservation, however, Laura is an intriguing melodrama. Suspects are plentiful enough, if not too pointed, and Vera Caspary gives the whole addle an added measure of complexity by having the supposed corpse turn up very much alive at about the half-way mark. Her reappearance was quite timely, too, nor it was becoming obvious that even the detective was coming under Laura’s spell – a situation which doesn’t present itself every day in crime novels, much less on the screen.
Clifton Webb, making his film debut in Laura as the acid-tongued columnist, Waldo Lydecker, is sophistry personified. His incisive performance is, however, closely matched by that of Dana Andrews as the detective. Mr. Andrews is fast proving himself to be a solidly persuasive performer, a sort of younger-edition Spencer Tracy. Other performances are contributed by Vincent Price, Judith Anderson and Dorothy Adams. Only Miss Tierney seems out of key. Perhaps if Laura Hunt had not had such a build-up, it would have been different. Anyway, the picture on the whole is close to being a top-drawer mystery« . Par T.M.P. pour le New York Times.
T.MP. considère que Laura aurait dû être une exceptionnelle réussite. Mais voilà, Gene Tierney, pour lui, n’est pas à la hauteur de l’entreprise, est hors de propos. Retournez le voir monsieur T.M.P. Il semblerait que nous n’ayons pas vu le même film…
Ma chronique bien plus positive par ici.