Double Indemnity-Discussion Question #2
The mood of Double Indemnity is dark, mysterious and gloomy. There is also a lot of suspicion and uncertainty in the air. I think the gloomy, mysterious mood of the movie is made this way because the movie is told as a flashback. The movie starts by Walter saying that he didn’t get the girl or the money, and then we see him seemingly getting the girl and the money. The whole time that I was seeing his plans go well, I was anticipating something bad happening, which added to the dreary mood. I did not think that everything was going to have a happy ending and instead was thinking about things that could possibly go wrong. When a movie causes the viewer to think up hypothetical disasters and failures of the characters, it definitely takes on a very dark mood.
The details of the mise-en-scene also add to this mood. Everything is basically in complete darkness or partial shadow. Even when it is light outside, Walter is shown in darkness. A recurring shot which I find very interesting, is the one where Walter is shown in alternating panels of light and shadow because of the closed shades. I think this frame shows how he is being pulled between the dark world of Phyllis, and trying to stay in a pure, good world with Keyes. This frame almost seem to shown him being sliced up by light and dark and being taken apart physically and mentally by the opposing sides in the movie. I think the entire movie is extremely mysterious and is made this way because just about every scene is under the cover of darkness, whether inside or outside.