Sunset Blvd. (1950)

Director: Billy Wilder Cinematographer: John F. Seitz
 Sunset Blvd. (1950) on IMDb

Nominated for 11 Academy Awards (including nominations in all four acting categories), the film stars William Holden as a naive and unsuccessful screenwriter and Gloria Swanson as a faded movie star who draws him into her demented fantasy world, in which she dreams of making a return to the screen. While transcending film noir tropes and featuring notable appearances from Erich von Stroheim and Cecil B. DeMille (playing himself), it’s Swanson’s legendary unsettling performance that propels Wilder’s deliciously cynical and melodramatic black comedy to greatness. Still probably the best critique of the inner workings of Hollywood and the destructive melancholy that comes with been trapped in the past.

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