The Web (1947)
'Come work for me' he said. 'Someone who stole from my rather large organisation has recently been released from prison, and he may want to get his revenge' he continued.
And do you know what, folks? Like a sap I fell for his spiel hook line and sinker. Me: One-time lawyer / present-time bodyguard, Bob Regan (Edmond O'Brien). And Him: One-time businessman / present-time con-artist, Andrew Colby (Vincent Price).
Granted, I didn't know Andrew was a con-man straight off the bat. No. Of course not. It was only after I shot the sap that stole from him in self-defense, that things didn't sit too well for yours truly.
Well, the first person who made me see the light was my good friend, Lieutenant Damico (William Bendix), when he surmised that the sap I killed had no reason for his 'retribution', especially since he must still have the money he stole from Andrew hidden away somewhere.
This was quickly followed by the second person who made me suspect something was going on, Andrews's lovely young secretary, Noel Faraday (Ella Raines), who inadvertently insinuated that Andrew was using her to figure out what I felt about my previous gun totting actions.
Oh! Wait up. There was someone else I almost forgot to mention. It's the saps daughter. One night she crept into my apartment, gun in hand, and professed that her father was a good man by nature, and that it was Andrew who was 'pulling everybody's strings'.
But then again, that's most probably why what next transpires all rolls around when I start to do some snooping. As love is neglected - a plan gets intercepted - a ploy ends in death - and at the end of the day Lieutenant Damico gives a quote from Macbeth.
Now if I said to you 'The Web' was a 'great film', I wouldn't be doing it any justice whatsoever. It's better than great. It's marvelous. Magnificent even. And should be placed in a museum for everyone to gaze at, enamored by its brilliant brilliance.
Admittedly, on a conceptual level the story in itself may appear like a bog standard crime thriller. Act one: Stooge gets conned into protecting a businessman. Act two: Stooge figure's out that the businessman is a right b*stard, and has involved him in a bit of naughtiness. And Act three: Stooge tries to get himself out of this mess as best he can.
Yet, whilst saying that, there were all those lovely little gems sprinkled throughout this film that made it all the more special by default. Like the gloss of the production for instance. Or how each of the characters was 'old school', charming, well spoken, and had that grittiness that'll make you want to buy a time machine on ebay.
Yeah! I'm not messing about! This movie has so much going for it, I'm just amazed that it hasn't been mentioned or highlighted in the media like other classics have. Try to think of it as a cross-between 'Sin City' and 'Time cop', set in the forties, without any of that sci-fi stuff, and with all of that neo-noir style that this genre of production has in spades.
Vincent Prince played the sneaky villain like no man alive; and part of me would have liked to have seen him get away with his shenanigans because of his mannered charm. Ella Raines, on the other hand, is so adorable; I bet you anything she could kick Megan Fox into touch without even breaking a sweat. And as for
Edmond O'Brien? Boy! What a hard-lined
Sam spade that guy is! He was just like this film in fact. Bold. Honest. Intriguing.
And a class act through and through.
Nuff said. Now go and watch it. Ha!
THE RATING: A