Double Indemnity Summary

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In Part II: The Private Investigator of The Longman Anthology of Detective Fiction it says, “The original world of the hard-boiled detective was clearly a male one, where women were suspect and dangerous.” (as cited in Mansfield-Kelley and Marchino, 2005, p.207). In the cases of Double Indemnity, directed by Billy Wilder, and The Gutting of Couffignal, wrote by Dashiell Hammett, this is exactly the case. Both are, in the case of Double Indemnity based off of, hard-boiled detective stories in which the women are cunning, manipulative, and dangerous. The women are strategically oriented, have little regard to others, and are selfish. They also blindly rely on the feelings and actions of others. They’re overconfident and proud of their abilities. …show more content…

Throughout the story, she acts sensible, helpful even. She tries to persuade the investigator to let her come along, saying that, "You'll probably find I can help you. I'm as strong as you, and quicker, and I can shoot." (Page 235). On page 207, the investigator notes the following about how Princess Zhukovski carries herself, "She sat down, coping her slender white hands in her lap. In neither face nor pose was there any sign of nervousness, not even of curiosity." He then goes on to explain that everything about her appearance seemed natural and that her voice was smooth and cool. She was like this before she knew she had been discovered. Further down on page 207, right after being discovered, the investigator notes the following changes in her demeanor, "Her strong slender body became the body of a lean crouching animal. Her white face became the face of an enraged animal. One hand-claw now- swept to a heavy pocket of her jacket." It’s then that he realizes her true character; she is animal-like. He goes on to say, "Then, before I could have batted an eyelash...the wild animal had vanished. Out of it...rose the princess again, cool and straight and tall." It's an interesting way to describe her. It can be translated to her personality as well. Like a wild animal, she's unpredictable and cannot be …show more content…

In Double Indemnity, Phyllis relied on Walter, the insurance company, and Keyes (the investigator). She relied that Walter would actually carry out the murder, that he wouldn't rat her out, and wouldn't get caught. She relied on the insurance company to accept the insurance claim and not to pursue a detailed investigation. Indirectly, she relied on Keyes to not figure out that she was involved or that a murder even took place. In The Gutting of Couffignal, the princess relied on the investigator and (not so blindly) her people. She had to trust that the investigator wouldn't figure out her plan and would follow along with it as well. She had to trust that her people would do as they were instructed. Both trusted fate as well. Regardless of their methodical nature, their plans weren’t as thoroughly planned as they thought; leaving parts up to

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