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Purple Noon

Posted on

Purple Noon

Current Status:
In Season
Alain Delon, Rene Clement
Rene Clement
Foreign Language, Mystery and Thriller

We gave it a B+

French filmmaker Rene Clement’s rereleased 1960 adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s creepily mesmerizing murder novel The Talented Mr. Ripley oozes enjoyable kinkiness through every pore of its decadently sunstruck Eastman color film stock. A bronzed Alain Delon, pornographically pretty, stars as Tom Ripley — American, sponger, psychopath — who is footloose and dissolute on the Italian Riviera. Maurice Ronet is the rich playboy Tom has been dispatched to retrieve to San Francisco, and who is drawn to the smutty thrill of his friend’s amorality. And Marie Laforet plays Ronet’s chic, Gallicly pouty fiancee, who hasn’t a clue that this twisted Hitchcockian story (Highsmith wrote Strangers on a Train) throbs with homoerotic subtext. When Purple Noon occasionally flags — Clement’s painterly eye takes plenty of time to sweep a room — you can lean back in your air-conditioned seat and thrill to the deceptive travelogue beauty of the thing. B+