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On trial for murder, Larry Ballantyne regurgitates an unbelievable story. He recounts how he philanders to other women while his rich loving wife Gretta tries to keep him in line. According to Larry, his girlfriend Verna dies accidentally in a car crash and his distraught wife tosses herself over a cliff after he runs out on her. The jury has a tough decision on this one. Written by
Gary Jackson <email@example.com>
Great performances from the four leads make this noirish melodrama a stand-out. Cast against type, Robert Young gives one of his finest performances (far more interesting than that in Crossfire), subtly giving his role of philandering but strangely sympathetic heel a depth which may perhaps go by unnoticed by some. Rita Johnson, in the minimal screen time alloted her, is likewise able to intimate complexities of character which imbue her role of manipulative wife with a touching frailty.
The shortened re-release version (which I viewed in a colourized copy) has been cleverly edited to leave the plot intact, but with 15 minutes of cuts significant elements of character development (all-important in a film of this type) have been sacrificed. The deletion of part of the scene at Nicks dilutes the initial warmth of the relationship between the Young and Jane Greer characters. And a concert scene which shows up the petulant nature of the Susan Hayward character has been deleted altogether. Other elements deleted from the re-release print are some of the opening remarks made by Frank Ferguson, and some dialogue between Young and Hayward when they are in his car on the way to her apartment.
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