29 June 2004 | dbdumonteil
The wages of sin,it's death...
...that's what an ominous sentence ,at the beginning of the movie ,tells us.It's from St Paul's epistles,we hear.It's true that one of the characters (Darrieux,the cheated heiress)is not far from bigotry.Her hubby(Pascal) wants the cake and eat it,so he kills his father-in-law -in a very original way:knowing,he suffers of the heart,he scares him to death;one should notice that nevertheless Clouzot used the trick much better in his classic "les diaboliques"-.Then he's getting ready to kill the wife to be able to live with more attractive nurse (Moreau).
It's 1956,in the pre-nouvelle vague days and the "cinema de qualité" was the trademark of the French cinema but it's obvious that there were two kinds of "cinema de qualité".The great one,which the nouvelle vague did not surpass (Duvivier,Clouzot,Becker,Decoin ) and the academic one which Denys de la Patelliere is part of ."Le salaire du péché" is a rather mediocre flick saved by the actors and the scene of the "murder" .De La Patelliere oddly thought Darrieux was "ugly"-He must have been blind!- and he would cast her again as a spinster in an awful "les yeux de l'amour" a couple of years later.