I’ve been sitting on the sofa with a sketchbook in my lap trying out some of my new art materials and playing around with a few I forgot I had. I should be up at my desk in my studio, but the Dog Days of Summer came early to Philadelphia, and the third floor of a rowhouse is not where I want to be.
As I’ve said before, I like to have noise on in the background while I draw so I’ll find some old movie or TV program that doesn’t require my strict attention. This time, I decided to take Quentin Tarantino’s advice and chase down the many movies available on YouTube. I took a shot and searched for the film noir classic Laura.
I didn’t find the 1944 original, but I did find a made-for-television remake from 1955 which I never knew existed. I was going to pass it up, but it had an interesting cast so I gave it a view.Dana Wynter had the unenviable task of following Gene Tierney’s performance in the original. Robert Stack played the detective just as he would Elliot Ness in The Untouchables. It was never really convincing that he was obsessed with or in love with Laura. The really interesting choice for the cast was George Sanders taking on the role of Waldo Lydecker which got actor Clifton Webb an Academy Award nomination in the original. If anybody could take on that role, it would be George Sanders. I thought he may have been able to outdo Webb, but sadly not quite. While the TV version was fairly faithful to the original script, it was cut down to an hour. A lot of it felt rushed, and much of the backstory of the characters was cut giving the actors little to work with outside of a mechanical murder mystery. It felt like a condensed Reader’s Digest version of the original.
Still, it was one of the things I had on in the background as I scribbled in my sketchbooks so it was perfectly enjoyable.
I’ve been working on some figure ideas trying to work out dynamic poses hoping they don’t look too ridiculous as well as a comic layout and whatever creeps and creatures coming out of the end of my pencils.
Seldom does the remake ever match the original… sigh
I thought it was odd that they would remake an 11 year old movie that was still well remembered. Why not air the original movie?