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Desire Me

underrated cinematic poetry
I just finished viewing "Desire Me" (bad title, I admit), which I began with a bit of trepidation--so off-putting was its reputation as an MGM stinker--but I found myself drawn into its unique realm mainly by the compelling performances of G. Garson and R. Hart. Sadly, R. Mitchum, one of my favorite actors of all time, had little on screen time in which to create a character of depth. Perhaps the filmmakers didn't realize that they had (unintentionally?) created a fine piece of magic realism--the almost mythic setting in a remote and traditionally mystical part of France (the realm of Breton-Arthurian legend and the arcane spiritual 4th dimension of the Celts), land of fog and mists. There are the "singing pool" that Garson shows to Hart, the doppelganger figures of Hart and Mitchum, a deeply troubled Garson's brave navigation of the rough emotional waters between these two men, the superbly photographed climax in deep fog in which one could scarcely distinguish between Mitchum and Hart. The only jarring note was the badly read voice-over introducing a saccharine tone into the concluding moments of the film. I think this is a must-see for anyone claiming to be a knowledgeable fan of 1940s films.

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