The Cobweb

The Cobweb

Directed by: Vincente Minnelli

Friday, May 7 - Sunday, May 9, 2010

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Not on DVD! “Minnelli reunited with producer John Houseman for this star-packed ensemble piece based on William Gibson’s popular novel about life inside a high-class psychiatric clinic. Featuring Charles Boyer and Richard Widmark as rival doctors battling for control over a posh private hospital, the film interweaves a surplus of subplots that explore the neuroses bubbling to the surface of prosperous postwar America, with loneliness, marital discontent and existential emptiness lurking beneath the surface. Minnelli’s first film to combine color and CinemaScope is, typically, a triumph of mise-en-scène. In THE COBWEB, visual style conveys — far better than verbose dialogue — the hothouse ambience of a cloistered little world rife with conflict. It is no exaggeration to say that these subplots come together in a crisis over the design of a pair of new drapes for the clinic, the perfect expression of one of the strengths of Minnelli’s filmmaking, the use of décor to express character and emotion.” – Harvard Film Archive

NR, 134 Minutes
USA, 1955


"One of the best of Minnelli's 50s dramas... it's fascinating, with fine performances."
- Time Out (London)


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