Film critic Emanuel Levy has reviewed Niagara (1953.) There are quite a few typos – and in the first sentence, Levy incorrectly names Raoul Walsh as director – but his overall perspective is interesting.
“Niagara is a film noir in color, a tale of an adulterous woman named Rose, played by Marilyn Monroe (at her most sensual), married to an insanely jealous husband, George Loomis (Joseph Cotten).
Niagara Falls, one of the most favorite honeymoon spots in the 1950s, serves as an ironic metaphor for the destructive power of out-of-control carnal and murderous obsessions. The color cinematography is deliberately lurid, hightening the tension inherent in the story, and (cameraman Joe MacDonald) makes the most of the unique locations.
Henry Hathaway’s direction is reliably taut, and he coaxes strong performances from Cotten as the obsessive, older hubby, and Monroe as the neurotic wife, who has just been released from a mental institution.
The shinily blond Monroe is dressed in voluptuous pink and red dresses, which contrast her with the more conventionally bourgeois Jean Peters, as well as with the dark and masculine looks of her lover, Richard Allan.”