(l to r) Don Cheadle and Denzel Washington from Devil in a Blue Dress
today I watched Devil in a Blue Dress on cable (satellite actually, but that's not the point...). while the headliner of the movie was the excellent-as-usual Denzel Washington, what makes this movie noteworthy for me -the reason i've seen it so many times- is the film's REAL star: Don Cheadle, whose character Mouse Alexander brought a bit of Texas gangster into the noirish gumshoe flick. Cheadle's performance was so authentic that he was universally praised (winning the LA Film Critics and National Society of Film Critics Awards, as well as nomination from the Screen Actors Guild for best supporting actor) , even when the movie as a whole wasn't.
Director Carl Franklin (Nowhere to Run, One False Move) managed to craft a film that stands as an example in black cinema, not of what is generally done, but what should be. adapted from the novel of the same name by Walter Mosley, Devil in a Blue Dress manages to be more than a period noir flick or a "black movie"... it addresses issues of love, race, infidelity, etc with an easy hand. but beyond all that, it gave me a new actor to identify with in Cheadle, whose star is still rising...
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