When Doris Day crossed over to the Dark Side (to paraphrase the programme notes from Noir City’s 13th Annual San Francisco Film Noir Festival)…she really did it. Her portrayal of a victimized wife of a psychotic husband (played by the gloriously handsome, Louis Jourdan) was successful & really had the audience rooting for her survival. By not trying to become another persona, such as imitating Barbara Stanwyck, and being a ‘hard woman.’ Doris Day retained elements of her familiar persona, but dug deeper into the elements of fear to create a character who was not living ‘happily ever after’ in marriage. Instead, she puts two & two together, and the only solution is to get away from her husband.
The plot line does, indeed, stretch the elements of suspension of disbelief nearly to the breaking point. What keeps it all in line, are superb performances by the supporting cast, and Doris Day’s impeccable interpretation of the role. Doris Day proved in JULIE that she was more than adequate to the task of creating a character who was not all sugar & spice. This film was a splendid choice for Noir City, giving audiences a rare opportunity to see another side of Doris Day in a thrilling motion picture that deals dramatically with the forces of good & evil.
Bravo, Doris Day, Louis Jourdan! And thank you to Eddie Muller & all who made this 2015 Noir City screening possible!
YOU TUBE TRAILER OF JULIE (“Run, Julie! Run For Your Life!”)