Sunset Boulevard ★★★★½

Included In Lists:
Strong Performances - Gloria Swanson

Review In A Nutshell:

I owe Sunset Boulevard a thorough and praising review; it was one of the first films by Billy Wilder that I deeply adored and highly thought-provoking, but at the moment, for some reason I cannot formulate one, at least for this film. It captured the inevitable decay of cinema legends, and the personal yearning within these legends to once again be graced with the shining lights and the lavish sets, standing once again on the pinnacle of Hollywood. All four of its key players have one thing set in their minds and it is success, either to claim it once again or to reach it for the first time; Wilder does a marvellous job in showing how the atmosphere simply consumes you, how in either direction it destroys you unless you leave the area itself; our central protagonist was on his way out, only to be accidently sucked in far too deeply. The power of course comes from the well-chosen cast, especially Gloria Swanson as Norma Desmond and Erich von Stroheim as essentially himself, as they mirror the conditions of their reality, finding honesty in their emotions, a perfect film for an actor or actress to utilise method acting. Sunset Boulevard is a treasure trove classic that requires me one more viewing to completely fall in love with it.

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