Reflections of Robert Montgomery

The  only way to see ROBERT MONTGOMERY in LADY IN THE LAKE is to have him stand in front of a mirror.

Just as well AUDREY TOTTER as Adrienne Fromsett has several mirrors of varying sizes in her apartment (where we get most glimpses of the detective.)

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Marlowe stretches out his arm from behind the camera!

 

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Lloyd Nolan, Robert Montgomery.

A new way of acting. Normally actors never look directly at the camera, but in LADY IN THE LAKE, the camera is Robert Montgomery and in this on the set shot, Lloyd Nolan as the crooked cop DeGarmot  is about to punch Philip Marlowe ( Robert Montgomery).

Hope the camera survived. Montgomery is seated to left of camera.

 

Lloyd Nolan

Lloyd Nolan

Looks like Lt. deGarmot (Lloyd Nolan) is about to hit Marlowe.

It must be odd for actors to emote directly to the camera when they are trained to ignore it.

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Lloyd  Nolan, Eddie Acuff?,  Tom Tully.

 

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Surely a film experience Audrey Totter never forgot. Audrey had the bulk of the reaction shots to the camera .

In this scene the usually frosty Miss Fromsett is cooking breakfast for Marlowe.

 

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Jayne Meadows

I liked Jayne Meadows’ portrayal of the fast talking, wacky woman who tries to kill Marlowe.

 

Audrey Totter, Leon Ames

Audrey Totter, Leon Ames

Leon Ames as Derice  Kingsby, the publisher Adrienne has her eye on till Marlowe comes along.

 

Unfortunately there is no picture of another mysterious character in the story, Ellay Mort.

And you really need to see this unusual film if that name doesn’t ring a bell.

 

Advertising for the film was more conventional.

As much as I love the movie, I think I prefer the usual method of filming. The first person camera technique was called ” the subjective camera” and had been hardly ever used before.

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(I have this photo in a color lobby card.)

 

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Publicity photo

Publicity photo

I’m sure  Robert Montgomery had studied the Raymond Chandler novel, along with screen writer Steve Fisher.

Apparently the author did not appreciate Montgomery’s innovative approach to filming.

I think Robert Montgomery acquitted himself well as the famed detective Philip Marlowe.

The film has a Christmas setting ,so ideal for this time of the year.

 

According to a Robert Montgomery  fan (http://classicmontgomery.blogspot.co.uk), Louis B. Mayer insisted on a prologue and epilogue as audiences wanted to see more of Montgomery.

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The above three pictures are from the start of the film, with Marlowe’s telling the audience that they will see everything just as he does.

 

The following two are from the ending. Presumably Robert Montgomery didn’t want the conventional beginning or ending as it took away from the first person camera used throughout the film.

Despite its box office success, this was Robert Montgomery ‘s last film for MGM,  where he began his career in 1929.

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Love the boast – ” The most sensational innovation in the history of the. cinema!”

 

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Dont think I’d like everybody staring at me like that.

Wonder if all the faces in this photo are identifiable.

 

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And Ms. Totter  has a pretty intense stare too!

 

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