Robert Siodmak vs. Curt Siodmak
Dating dilemmas. Which brother to choose? The dark, brooding mysterious one. Or the one that’s all mathy and gothy, with a pinch of scary fun. Such is the debate among the criterati.
The Noiristas are just luvin Robert Siodmak, cause there’s just so many dark alleys to peer down on those lonely Saturday nights. Who can resist Miss Ava in The Killers or Miss Stanwyck in The File on Thelma Jordan? Or how about two Olivia de Havillands in The Dark Mirror? (Does the detective really have to choose which de Havilland to throw in jail? Why not both?) In all, Siodmak directed 8 noir films between 1943 and 1950 before he got fed up with studio and star antics and sailed back to Europe. I will profile a couple of these films in future postings.
To Horror cultists, Curt Siodmak is the disrespected little brother. Robert was the Director, Curt the writer. Robert was Oscar caliber, Curt was the “monster” writer.
But Curt wasn’t just any monster writer, he created the WOLF MAN! The first movie werewolf. Seventy years later movies, TV, cable, cartoons — whatever– nobody messes with Curt’s version of the werewolf. Witness True Blood’s hotties. All waxed up and toothies capped, but watch out for that full moon! Absolutely amazing in a town where a writer’s creation is rarely sacrosanct.
And…OMG! Curt wrote one of the best camp movies ever: Bride of the Gorilla.
Raymond Burr is a cursed plantation owner that turns into a Gorilla at night. His wife, “Bad Blonde” Barbara Payton, feels “neglected”. Lon Cheney investigates.*
Curt also wrote Donovan’s Brain, the basis for my next post – The Lady and the Monster. See ya.
*This synopsis may be wildly inaccurate.