|Index||5 reviews in total|
3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:
Carol Reed, Sidney Gilliat and Margaret Lockwood. Not bad at all, 6 November 2008
Author: Terrell-4 from San Antonio, Texas
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
"Nurse required to attend invalid in quiet Surrey village; 22-26;
hospital trained but experience in private nursing essential. Apply
sending details and photograph to Mrs. Bentley, Camthorpe House,
Camthorpe, Surrey." The advertisement might have added, "Also
essential: Nurse must be thought guilty, even though she was acquitted
at trial, of murdering a previous invalid in her care."
Anne Graham (Margaret Lockwood) had gone on trial for murdering the self-centered, sick woman she had been caring for. Sleeping pills were the means; a small legacy was the motive. Everyone assumed Anne had done it done. A resourceful young barrister, Stephen Farringdon (Barry K. Barnes), was able to plant enough seeds of doubt in the jury's mind to get her off. Even he thinks she might have done it. She now finds she's unemployable. Who wants a suspected murderer for a nurse? Fortuitously, she receives in the mail a newspaper with an advertisement for a nurse. The location is in Surrey, some way from London. She applies, is interviewed, and is hired. She is to take care of a wealthy older man, Mr. Bentley, who is confined to a wheelchair. The man's attractive wife, Mrs. Bentley, is most solicitous. Tracy the butler watches it all. And then we realize that the butler had been present at Anne's trial.
As you might suppose, it's not long before Mr. Bentley has died from an overdose of sleeping pills. A codicil to his will gives a small legacy to Anne. And now the police are convinced Anne killed both of her patients. Fortunately, Stephen Farringdon has cast aside his original doubt. He finds himself falling in love with Anne, and he is shrewd enough to think this second murder is a clever plot to make Anne look guilty while the real killers, who now will be wealthy, move on.
There are no plot surprises. This is a "How's she going to get out of this" mystery. For the first 35 minutes, we have the set up. For the last 45 minutes, the extrication. Much depends on the appeal of Margaret Lockwood. In the Forties she became one of Britain's greatest stars. It was hard to beat her as a plucky, intelligent heroine or as a manipulating villain. Either way, she was an immensely likable personality. Others in the cast speak to the great depth of acting Britain could put in its films when it chose to. Roger Livesey plays a detective, Farringdon's friend, and he brings a lot of charm to the film. He has that inimitable voice, husky, friendly, and a little skeptical. In small parts, often unbilled, are such fine actors as Roland Culver, Leo Genn, Mervyn Johns, Felix Aylmer and Basil Radford. Unfortunately, the movie suffers because neither the male lead nor the villain strikes many sparks. It's particularly unlikely that Tracy, small, smug and supercilious, would be any woman's hetero heartthrob. And Farringdon is one of those lean, polite, cultured types who seem to think a second glass of sherry might be too exciting for their girl friends. The movie would benefit, in my view, by having two strong, attractive actors dealing with Margaret Lockwood.
Carol Reed gives us a clever murder thriller with some nice touches, from a black kitten tugging at the hem of a night dress while a petulant, sick woman slowly creeps her way to the medicine chest, to a humorous bit of misdirection involving a detective and a crook. Reed and screenwriter Sidney Gilliat know how to create characters that have enough detail to be interesting. Gilliat, who with his partner, Frank Launder, either together or separately, either working as writer, director or producer, or in any combination, were responsible for some great Forties movies, too: Green for Danger, The Belles of St. Trinian's. I See a dark Stranger, The Rake's Progress, The Lady Vanishes, Night Train to Munich, among others.
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Well-made but un-thrilling thriller, 21 April 2012
Author: David Frieze from Massachusetts, USA
A young nurse who has been acquitted of poisoning her employer manages to find work under another name - and is accused of murder, by the same method, a second time. We know the guilty parties well in advance, and the solution of the crime by the nurse's attorney owes more to luck and intuition than to detection. There's no chase scene, no romance, not a great deal of suspense. From Carol Reed, the same director who made "Night Train to Munich", "Odd Man Out" and "The Third Man", this is a remarkably bland film. Still, it's very smoothly made, everything is focused on the story line, and the acting is uniformly excellent. It's a solid, professional piece of work (and I know that sounds like damning with faint praise), and while there's no urgent reason to see it more than once, it's certainly worth seeing once.
2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Courting Prejudice, 31 January 2003
Author: davidholmesfr from Netherlands
Core to the plot is the extent to which a justifiable acquittal at a trial
nevertheless prejudices the accused's future life. Given modern day
over sensational press coverage this is an issue as valid today (probably
more so) than it was in war-time Britain. But the film does not follow
line, rather it presents us with a good old-fashioned courtroom drama,
culminating in a finale of which Perry Mason would have been proud. Quite
how the hero lawyer manages this stretches the judicial imagination
somewhat, especially with a flawed witness, whose evidence clinches the
outcome, not having to testify from the witness box.
Despite these reservations this is an enjoyable enough production which canters along at a good pace without any pretensions to high art. And it was nice to see some early work from two actresses, Irene Handl (particularly malevolent as the first "victim") and Kathleen Harrison, who both went on to greater things in post-war British TV.
4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Lockwood's Foreboding Dark Menace, 14 September 2006
Author: fuhgeddaboutit01 from United Kingdom
Most film fans will have seen "The Wicked Lady"(1945) before they see this 1940 film.It was surely in playing roles like nurse Anne Graham which convinced casting directors and producers that Margaret Lockwood would be ideal in her most famous role as Lady Barbara Skelton & Highwaywoman. Another reviewer mentions prejudice and it shows that society still believes "there is no smoke without fire".To get a job (even though you have been aquitted of murder) especially in a caring job like nursing, it is sad that it is necessary to change your name because prejudice lingers on in the mind of society.However in Hollywood U.S.A. and in other rich countries, it cynically seems that if you are rich and famous you can never be found guilty of a serious crime let alone serve time in prison when one can afford high priced lawyers to get yourself aquitted.So often the lower (and impecunious) social orders feel the full weight of the law.But here Anne Graham's lawyer for once is the hero.He bamboozles the villain to give himself away to justice using a neat bluff in court!Nice to see Roger Livesey playing the detective.His most remembered role is the doctor in "A Matter of Life & Death"(1946) and "The Secret Life of Colonel Blimp" both Powell & Preesburger films.
1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:
Carol Reed film from 1940, 17 March 2011
Author: blanche-2 from United States
Margaret Lockwood is "The Girl in the News" as a nurse who is acquitted
of murder, only to find herself accused again. Carol Reed directed, and
besides Lockwood, it stars Emlyn Williams and Roger Livesey. Lockwood
is Anne Graham, a young nurse working in a household when her invalid
employer takes too many sleeping pills. Graham is accused of murder but
acquitted. However, she finds getting a job impossible until she
changes her name. Someone mails her a classified ad for a nursing job,
for which she applies and is accepted. Then history repeats itself.
A very good film, excellently directed by Reed with an underplayed performance by Lockwood. Emlyn Williams plays her attorney. Though I figured this film out before the plot unfolded, "The Girl in the News" is still good and worth seeing.
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