Years after her aunt was murdered in her home, a young woman moves back into the house with her new husband. However, he has a secret that he will do anything to protect, even if it means driving his wife insane.
After the death of her famous opera-singing aunt, Paula is sent to study in Italy to become a great opera singer as well. While there, she falls in love with the charming Gregory Anton. The two return to London, and Paula begins to notice strange goings-on: missing pictures, strange footsteps in the night and gaslights that dim without being touched. As she fights to retain her sanity, her new husband's intentions come into question. Written by
The aria that Ingrid Bergman is singing when we see her in the first scene of her in the present day is from the Gaetano Donizetti opera "Lucia Di Lammermoor". The opera is famous for its so-called "mad scene", in which the eponymous Lucia goes insane. See more »
Gregory is shown leaving the house from the inside, opening the door most of the way. Cut to the next moment outside, but it repeats most of the door-opening. See more »
Paula Alquist Anton:
It isn't here, you must have dreamed you put it there. Are you suggesting that this is a knife I hold in my hand? Have you gone mad, my husband?
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The opening and closing credits are displayed over a background of a burning gaslight. If you look at the shadow on the wallpaper, you see a man strangling a woman. See more »
Not being a big fan of older movies myself (for some reason I really don't know) I decided to go out on a recommendation and rent "Gaslight." And I must be honest, I was impressed.
When Paula was younger, her aunt with whom lived with in Thornton Square in London was murdered by a strangler roaming the streets. Paula goes to stay in Italy, and some time later, meets Gregory. She and Gregory plan to marry, and after they do, they move to London, back to the exact house Paula lived in.
Not too long after, Paula starts to become "forgettful," as Gregory tells her. In fact, he tells her a lot of things...and she believes him. Then things she knows she had put somewhere or remembered doing seem nonexistent, and Paula is left to wonder if her sanity is in check. Then, many times, she starts hearing footsteps, and the gaslights are going down a lot. Is Paula going crazy, or is she being haunted by her dead aunt's spirit...or is it something far more sinister?
I liked this movie a lot. Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyet were amazing. Bergman portrays her character's emotions to the point that you feel the same way she does. And Boyet is pure evil in this one. Many times watching this, I was thinking, "He is so terrible to her!" It was so psychological, how everything eveloped. The best scene in the whole movie took place at the reception, when Gregory tells Paula he lost his watch, and then finds it in her purse. Then she bursts into tears, and it was so absolutely amazing how the scene was pulled off. In fact, it was so subtle it was scary. You wouldn't expect a missing watch found in her purse to be such a big deal, but it is such a strong scene.
The one thing I didn't like about this otherwise nearly flawless movie was the climax. It was just too dull to me, and the only part I really liked was Paula's wicked sarcasm towards Gregory while they're in the attic. She truly did deserve the Best Actress Oscar for her acting, but nothing could mask the fact that the climax was just too weak. If it had a bit of a touchup, this movie would be perfect.
All in all, I recommend this without hesitation. It is absolutely amazing, and I could watch it again and still enjoy it, and that is quite rare for me. So, I recommend you find this wherever you can and give it a chance. It's a classic.
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