I had the opportunity to see Billy Wilder’s “Sunset Boulevard” on the big screen in a movie theater. The movie stars William Holden, Gloria Swanson, written by Billy Wilder, Charles Brackett, D.M. Marshman Jr. and directed by Billy Wilder. For those not familiar with him, 4 of his movies are on the American Film Institute’s 100 Greatest films ever made. They are “Some Like It Hot” (if you haven’t seen it, see it now), “The Apartment”, “Double Indemnity” (great movie) and “Sunset Boulevard”.
I own a copy of the movie on disc, but Turner Classic Movies, in conjunction with Fathom Events, has a Classic Film Series playing in selected theaters. “Sunset” was on the list.
Plot summary from IMDB –
“In Hollywood of the 50’s, the obscure screenplay writer Joe Gillis is not able to sell his work to the studios, is full of debts and is thinking in returning to his hometown to work in an office. While trying to escape from his creditors, he has a flat tire and parks his car in a decadent mansion in Sunset Boulevard. He meets the owner and former silent-movie star Norma Desmond, who lives alone with her butler and driver Max Von Mayerling. Norma is demented and believes she will return to the cinema industry, and is protected and isolated from the world by Max, who was her director and husband in the past and still loves her. Norma proposes Joe to move to the mansion and help her in writing a screenplay for her comeback to the cinema, and the small-time writer becomes her lover and gigolo. When Joe falls in love for the young aspirant writer Betty Schaefer, Norma becomes jealous and completely insane and her madness leads to a tragic end. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil”
Acting in the film as themselves, Buster Keaton, Hedda Hopper, Ceil B. DeMille, H.B.Warner, Anna Q. Nilsson. The great director Erich Von Stroheim plays the butler and driver. Plus a young Jack Webb – “Just the facts, ma’am” – in a small supporting role.
Sunset was nominated for 11 Oscars and won 3. Info here.