Gloria Grahame: five film favourites

27 November 2017

To coincide with the release of the stranger-than-fiction Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool (Fri 24 November - Thu 7 December), based on Peter Turner's memoir recounting his romance with Hollywood star Gloria Grahame, we take a look back at five of our favourite Gloria Grahame films...

It's a Wonderful Life (1946) - In one of her first feature film roles, Grahame shines as Violet, a flirty small-town girl who carries a torch for George Bailey (James Stewart). Despite it being a relatively small role, she makes it memorable, quipping “This old thing? Why, I only wear it when I don’t care how I look.”

Because Christmas wouldn't be the same without it, we are of course bringing this festive treat back to our screens - tickets are selling fast, so book now to avoid missing out.

Crossfire (1947) - Portraying a dance-hall girl who witnesses a murder, Grahame received a best supporting actress Oscar nomination for her role in Crossfire, the first Hollywood fillm to tackle the topic of anti-Semitism.  

In a Lonely Place (1950) - When a lonely Hollywood screenwriter (Humphrey Bogart) is accused of murder, his next-door-neighbour Laurel (Gloria Grahame) offers him a fake alibi. A relationship soon develops, but can she be sure he did not commit the crime? Pure film noir in look, mood and atmosphere, this may also be the finest two hours of its two stars and its director, the great Nicholas Ray.

See it in DCA cinema on Sat 2 December.

The Big Heat (1953) - One of the all-time great film noirs by one of the undisputed masters of the form, Fritz Lang, The Big Heat stars the incomparable Glenn Ford as Dave Bannion, a homicide detective who descends into the underworld in search of revenge when his wife is murdered. In the mire, he comes across a remorseless thug (a brilliantly volatile Lee Marvin) and his moll (Gloria Grahame), who decides to help Bannion in the hope of redemption.

See it in DCA Cinema on Tue 5 December.

Human Desire (1954) - Reuniting with Glenn Ford and Fritz Lang for the second time (after the huge success of The Big Heat), Human Desire tells the story of a returning war veteran who begins an affair with his co-worker's wife, and features Grahame in one of the most complex and powerful roles of her career.

Be sure to catch Annette Bening perfectly capturing Grahame’s extraordinary voice in Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool, (Fri 24 November - Thu 7 December), and don't miss the woman herself in The Big Heat, In a Lonely Place and It's a Wonderful Life - all screening this December in DCA cinema.

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