Elizabeth "Betty" Short (dubbed by the press as "The Black Dahlia") was a young aspiring actress from the East Coast. Her shortlived career took her down some questiona ble paths. In January of 1947 she was found brutally murdered. The LAPD begins their investigation, with Lee Blanchard and Bucky Bleichert on the case - new partners working their first homicide together. Bleichart narrates the tale in the book.Blanchard gets obsessed with the case and neglects his girlfriend, Kay - who Bleichart is in love with too. But then Bleichert becomes attracted to the daughter of one of LA's prominent families. She looks like Betty Short and had a sordid connection to her. Bleichert loses focus as he struggles with his feelings for the two women he loves. In the end, crimes of corruption come to light. The story is a fictional answer to the real-life unsolved murder of Betty Short.
The Black Dahlia (2006) - Rated R - 2 hrs 1 min
Starring: Josh Hartnett, Scarlett Johansson, Hilary Swank, Aaron Eckhart, Mia Kirshner
Directed by: Brian DePalma Screenplay by: Josh Friedman
Genre: Drama, Thriller, Crime/Gangster
The Black Dahlia (1987) - 336 pages
Author: James Ellroy
Genre: Fiction, Mystery
I was very curious about the style of this film - film noir for sure. All the reviews confirm this, however, it appears that the film was so stylized that it neglected the story and the actors performances.
Almost all the reviews compliment the visuals in the movie but the story becomes way too campy way too quickly. The actors performances were not so great either. So disappointing.
So in this case, the book is definitely better. The film is just unable to adequately portray the complicated story found in the book. The very thing that makes it so interesting and intriguing.
The story does interest me because of its basis on a real-life unsolved murder mystery though. The LAPD carried out a citywide manhunt and never found the Black Dahlia's killer.