Skip to content

Female on the Beach (1955)

If I could choose to do it all over again, I’d watch this title with a theater full of like minded classic film fans. We’d laugh up a storm and all agree it was the most entertaining night out at the movies this year.

For the wrong reasons!

female_on_the_beach_xlg

Jeff Chandler stars here as a well kept man who likes it that way. You might say he’s a gigolo though Mr. Hays wouldn’t approve of such things in the mid fifties cinema. In our opening scene there’s a loud argument and a drunken woman falling to her death just after Chandler leaves the room towards the balcony.

Officer Charles Drake isn’t so sure that the coroners decision of a suicide is correct. He’s going to be poking around through out the proceedings. Much to the chagrin of our aging leading lady, Joan Crawford. Joan owns the beach house where the death occurred and has decided to move back in though her real estate agent Jan Sterling is shopping the property.

jansterling-female-on-the-beach

Chandler is all over Crawford from the moment she awakens in her new surroundings. He’s cocksure of himself and she wants nothing to do with his brand of eye candy. Or does she.

Their romantic scenes are what fuels the high camp within this Joseph Pevney feature.

Chandler with his dead pan delivery….. “Whenever I wake up a beautiful girl, I, uh, always give her breakfast. “ Or how about this politically correct number… “That’s right, be afraid of me. A little afraid, at least. A woman’s no good to a man unless she’s a little afraid of him. “

chandler and crawford

Joan with her own style of camp…… “You must go with the house – like plumbing. “ Then there’s ……. “I have a nasty imagination, and I’d like to be left alone with it. “

It’s a rather stormy love/hate relationship with Joan and Jeff. She just can’t help herself despite knowing he’s a scam artist backed by con artists Cecil Kellaway and Natalie Schafer. Schafer is in full training here for her role as Mrs. Howell on Gilligan’s Island. Any clip within could have been used for a screen test to play opposite Jim Backus.

female on the beach2

Let us not forget that within this overly melodramatic love affair there is still a murder to be solved and a killer among our variety of characters. Not that it’s too big of a mystery as the plot practically thrusts the answer in your face when Chandler is confronted by…..oops. I know the answer is obvious but I refuse to play spoiler!

Part of the warped fun here is Chandler’s refusal to accept NO as an answer to his overtly sexual advances at Joan. In the world of black and white fifties cinema where Crawford is concerned I guess NO means yes because once Jeff gets through her tough exterior shell she just can’t live without him.

At least not until her imagination runs wild and she begins to think that Jeff just might be out to murder her after all.

Throw logic out the window with this one and settle in for a fun romp with a lost looking Chandler and plenty of high camp in the style that only Joan Crawford can deliver.

This is the third of four titles I have checked out now in the TCM Women In Danger collection. So far it’s proved to be money well spent with Woman in Hiding the real gem in the set.

tcm vault set

7 Comments »

  1. Haven’t seen this in a while, but the performances are priceless, as you say. Two bigger-than-life personalities in their gendered ways, and it would indeed be fabulous to riff.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

"DESTROY ALL FANBOYS!"

Smashing System Bias Since 1972...

Movies ala Mark

With a Cast of Thousands

Classic Horrors

From silent screen to Halloween, and everything scary in between.

IDENTIKIT

The current online container for the writer Konrad Wardh

Just Hit Play

The Good, the Bad and sometimes Ugly in film

Strother Martin Film Project

What we've got here is failure to communicate

Sophia Riley Kobacker

it's all about the story, possums...

Wolfmans Cult Film Club

Cult, B-Movies, cheesy fun films to Film Noir to classics new to me.

Talking Pulp

All things pulp and then some

cinema cities

a personal odyssey through film

Mark David Welsh

Watching the strangest movies - so you don't have to...

Scenes from the Morgue

The Lost Art of Pulp Ads: Film, Booze, Smokes & More!

Film Speech

All things film and television

Diary of A Movie Maniac

A Personal Journey Through Cinema & Television

portraitsbyjenni

My perspective on life & Classic Movie Recommendations

Statis Pro 1978 Replay

Methodically replaying every game of the 1978 baseball season!

4 Star Films

Looking deeper at the best classic movies

everythingnoir

Movies, Television, Books....Everything Noir

Chaplin-Keaton-Lloyd film locations (and more)

by John Bengtson "the great detective of silent film locations" New York Times

Sister Celluloid

Where old movies go to live

Silent-ology

Uncovering the silent era

Canadian Cinephile

"The only way to get rid of my fears is to make films about them." - Alfred Hitchcock

Noirish

The annex to John Grant's *A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Film Noir*

Cinema Monolith

Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.

Sunset Boulevard

Writings of a Cinephile

The Bogie Film Blog

A Film by Film Affair with Humphrey Bogart

Vienna's Classic Hollywood

Vintage Hollywood films and stars

The Film Authority

You're ten seconds from watching an amazing film...

Once upon a screen...

...a classic film and TV blog

shadowsandsatin

. . where the worlds of film noir and pre-code collide . .

hitchcockmaster

Where Suspense Lives!

Tipping My Fedora

Enjoying mystery, crime and suspense in all media

Silver Screenings

An Irreverent Blog of Old Movies

monsterminions

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To

Comet Over Hollywood

Home for classic movie lovers

filmgeek101

classic movie views for the classic and not-so-classic movie fan

Riding the High Country

Reviews and ramblings

Speakeasy

watching movies

"DESTROY ALL FANBOYS!"

Smashing System Bias Since 1972...

Movies ala Mark

With a Cast of Thousands

Classic Horrors

From silent screen to Halloween, and everything scary in between.

IDENTIKIT

The current online container for the writer Konrad Wardh

Just Hit Play

The Good, the Bad and sometimes Ugly in film

Strother Martin Film Project

What we've got here is failure to communicate

Sophia Riley Kobacker

it's all about the story, possums...

Wolfmans Cult Film Club

Cult, B-Movies, cheesy fun films to Film Noir to classics new to me.

Talking Pulp

All things pulp and then some

cinema cities

a personal odyssey through film

Mark David Welsh

Watching the strangest movies - so you don't have to...

Scenes from the Morgue

The Lost Art of Pulp Ads: Film, Booze, Smokes & More!

Film Speech

All things film and television

Diary of A Movie Maniac

A Personal Journey Through Cinema & Television

portraitsbyjenni

My perspective on life & Classic Movie Recommendations

Statis Pro 1978 Replay

Methodically replaying every game of the 1978 baseball season!

4 Star Films

Looking deeper at the best classic movies

everythingnoir

Movies, Television, Books....Everything Noir

Chaplin-Keaton-Lloyd film locations (and more)

by John Bengtson "the great detective of silent film locations" New York Times

Sister Celluloid

Where old movies go to live

Silent-ology

Uncovering the silent era

Canadian Cinephile

"The only way to get rid of my fears is to make films about them." - Alfred Hitchcock

Noirish

The annex to John Grant's *A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Film Noir*

Cinema Monolith

Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.

Sunset Boulevard

Writings of a Cinephile

The Bogie Film Blog

A Film by Film Affair with Humphrey Bogart

Vienna's Classic Hollywood

Vintage Hollywood films and stars

The Film Authority

You're ten seconds from watching an amazing film...

Once upon a screen...

...a classic film and TV blog

shadowsandsatin

. . where the worlds of film noir and pre-code collide . .

hitchcockmaster

Where Suspense Lives!

Tipping My Fedora

Enjoying mystery, crime and suspense in all media

Silver Screenings

An Irreverent Blog of Old Movies

monsterminions

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To

Comet Over Hollywood

Home for classic movie lovers

filmgeek101

classic movie views for the classic and not-so-classic movie fan

Riding the High Country

Reviews and ramblings

Speakeasy

watching movies

%d bloggers like this: