Chris Fujiwara at The Current:
Early in Two Girls on the Street (1939), the third of five films that André de Toth made in his native Hungary at the outset of his long directing career, something happens that predicts both the mood and the concerns of de Toth’s future work in Hollywood. Vica (Bella Bordy), newly arrived in Budapest and working on a construction site, has received permission to sleep in the storage room adjoining the architect’s office. Working at his desk late at night, the architect, Csiszár (Andor Ajtay), at first shows no interest in Vica. Then, through the open doorway to the storage room, he sees her shadow on the wall as she undresses. The shadow distracts him more and more—and de Toth cuts back to it insistently—until, after checking his watch twice in a businesslike manner, Csiszár walks toward the door and enters the room.
The scene evokes the world of total unreliability that we encounter in such later de Toth films as Ramrod (1947), House of Wax, Crime Wave (both 1953), Riding Shotgun (1954), The Two-Headed Spy (1958), and Man on a String (1960), a world in which situations and affections reverse themselves in a moment.