I had only seen a few bits and pieces of Compulsion before, so I was SUPER-excited to see it tonight! (Orson Welles + Bradford Dillman? HECK YEAH.)
It was perfect. Absolutely perfect.
The direction, the writing, the acting -- everything was flawless.
The story itself is really actually quite gruesome, but Bradford Dillman was so awesome I was kinda rooting for him (HORRIBLE CONFESSION OF THE DAY).
And when he was creepily talking to his teddy bear? I thought it was sort of adorable. (Yeah, I'm pretty sure I shouldn't be allowed to write reviews for serious films ever, ever, ever.)
(I mean, SERIOUSLY! How is this not adorable?! ;-D)
I was waiting expectantly for the other reason why I watched this movie, but he didn't decide to show up for over an hour. And then after he appeared, Orson took over the entire movie and delivered long monologues and generally just forgot there were other cast members.
He was awesome.
There are very few actors that can talk for ten minutes without stopping, yet be completely compelling and fascinating. Mr. Welles is one of them. His court scene was perfect. And his final lines to Dean Stockwell -- STUNNING.
This brings me to Dean Stockwell, who also gave a great performance. He got a bit overshadowed by Bradford (which is how his character should be), but he was still good.
And really, this film had NO bad performances. AND IT HAD MARTIN MILNER (I didn't know he was gonna be in it!)
I really have no more words to add to this highly nonsensical semi-review, but everyone should go watch Compulsion. It's basically a class in acting, writing, directing, and how to seem threatening while wearing a bow-tie (you must a have an awesome evil smile).
I was watching this with a friend and casually mentioned that I had once sent Mr. Dillman a fan letter congratulating him on having the greatest evil smile ever.
My friend's response? "OH MY GOSH. YOU'RE ONE OF THOSE CREEPY FANS!"