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Ambitious poor relation Blanche Fuller accepts a job as governess from her wealthy cousins who have adopted the name Fury since they acquired the ancestral home of the Fury family. Blanche plots to become the lady of the manor but her illicit passion for the vengeful, obsessed Philip Thorn sets off a string of tragic events, including murder. Written by
Blanche Fullerton accepts an invitation to go and work for her wealthy Uncle out on the Clare estate. Tho the estate is the ancestral home to the Fury family, the Fullerton's take the name of Fury to be their own and run the estate as the rightful heirs. Philip Thorn believes he is the rightful heir to the estate but just can't find the proof needed to claim what he feels is rightfully his. Once Blanche enters the estate the men of the home have their heads turned, and from that point on Clare estate, and the whole Fury dynasty, is in danger of going down a very dark path that can may only lead to pain and misery. Is the ape curse of the Fury's about to strike again?
There is a good chance that I'll be reviewing this picture with a hint of bias, for Blanche Fury has everything that I personally look for in a Gothic classic picture. Two lead stars firing on all cylinders, both Stewart Granger and Valerie Hobson positively ooze grace and quality amongst the glorious colour and corking costumes. The mansion of the piece is just perfect (Wootton Lodge, Staffordshire, England), a poetic stone built structure by day that is surrounded by rolling countryside, but by night it's a hauntingly monolithic place of dreams and simmering passions. The dialect perfectly befits the late 40s British setting, where the story itself is crammed with passions and dastardly motives, adulterous leanings and murderous intent. But above all else it's the ending that seals the deal, as our protagonists respective futures unravel in yet another trip down some dark twisty road.
Based on the novel written by Joseph Shearing (who was actually Marjorie Bowen), the inspiration for the story is a real life case from 1848, this itself carries with it no small amount of potency, adding still further a fleck of nastiness to the unfolding drama. Blanche Fury is very much one for those who like Gothic melodramas or uneasy mansion set thrillers, the likes of Dragonwyck, House Of Usher, perhaps even Alfred Hitchcock's wonderful Rebecca. It's tightly directed by Marc Allégret and acted accordingly, whilst also technically the picture scores high as the score (Clifton Parker) and the photography (Guy Green/Geoffrey Unsworth) gives the picture an all round quality production. Blanche Fury, as a story itself? Well it's a little gem from the golden sub-genre of Gothic melodramas. At the time of writing Blanche Fury is still searching for a wider, more appreciative, audience, so if you get the chance to see it then don't pass up the chance because it's a must for fans of the films mentioned above. 8.5/10
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