Charles Vidor, 1946.
1. Rita. Ree-ta. The tip of the tongue stumbling down the palate, two steps at a time, struggling to get its trousers off. Her first scene: what people talk about is the entrance, her head rearing into the shot, face framed by that hair. Notice the moment after that: Ballin, her husband, has called "Are you decent?" Gilda spots Johnny Farrell, and half pouts, showing her lower teeth. You hear her say: "I'm decent." You see her saying: "I'm filthy."
2. Noir. This film ticks most of the boxes - femme fatale, cynical/romantic hero, infidelity, amour fou, crime, bad luck, bad Freudianism. But noir is a look as well as a mood: the shadows need to crowd the actors. It's too well lit.
3. Ever noticed how monogamous noir is? Even if there's more than one woman available, the hero never has any choice.
4. The McGuffin. Tungsten! Corner the market in tungsten and you can rule the world! What's that about?
5. The real plot: Glenn Ford is offered Rita Hayworth on a plate and he says no. What's that about? Maybe if Rita was a little less ludicrously desirable the film would make sense. The sexiest scene isn't her strip-tease to "Put the Blame on Mame" – how can something so public be sexy? – but her intimate dance with Ford. She breathes at him: "I could help you get in practice again. Dancing, I mean." You can feel her breath on your own ear.