Screen Time: Perfume in “Sunset Boulevard”

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I recently re-watched “Sunset Boulevard” (1950, directed by Billy Wilder) in order to include it in a list of movies with famous New Year’s Eve scenes (see here). There’s not much more to say about this movie that hasn’t already been said, but I did want to mention its two references to perfume here, as part of this ongoing series of posts.

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Confetti on the Silver Screen: New Year’s Eve at the Movies

the apartment nye

New Year’s Eve has never really been a favorite occasion of mine. 2014 was a frustrating and disappointing year for me, so I’m glad to see it end. I just can’t work up much cheer. That’s the way it crumbles, cookie-wise. (Apartment reference!)

All the same, I have to admit that this last day of the year works well as a plot device for movies. I recently wrote a “listicle” of ten films that take place partially or entirely on New Year’s Eve. You can read it here, at Biography.com.

Image: Shirley MacLaine in The Apartment (1960).

 

Screen Time: “The Talented Mr. Ripley”

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I went to see “The Talented Mr. Ripley” in the theater when it was released in 1999, and I’ve re-watched it multiple times over the years. I enjoy this movie for many reasons—Italian locations! 1950s fashions! tightly plotted psychological suspense!—and a perfume moment never hurts.

In one scene, Tom Ripley (played by Matt Damon) sits at a portable typewriter to compose a letter that he will then sign as “Dickie Greenleaf,” another major character. (This story includes many themes of doubling and assumed identities; that’s all I’ll say.) Next to the typewriter sits a package from the venerable Florentine apothecary and perfumery Santa Maria Novella.

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