It was Leonora Eames' childhood dream come true. She had married Smith Ohlrig, a man worth millions. But her innocent dream became a nightmare once she realizes the truth about her husband ... See full summary »
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It was Leonora Eames' childhood dream come true. She had married Smith Ohlrig, a man worth millions. But her innocent dream became a nightmare once she realizes the truth about her husband - he is power mad and insane! Since he will not grant her a divorce, she leaves her life of luxury on Long Island and goes to work as a receptionist in an impoverished doctor's office in NYC's lower east side. After Smith deceives her into a temporary reconciliation, Leonora becomes pregnant. By the time she realizes she is expecting, she and one of the doctors, Larry Quinada (James Mason), have fallen in love. But she is again lured backed to her wealthy husband to give her child financial security. Her sadistic husband is hell-bent on keeping her and her child prisoner. What will happen to Leonora? Written by
Fiona Kelleghan <email@example.com>
James Mason said of director Ophuls, "I think I know the reason why producers tend to make him cry. Inevitably they demand some stationary set-ups, and a shot that does not call for tracks is agony for dear poor Max, who, separated from his dolly, is wrapped in deepest melancholy. Once, when they took away his crane, I thought he'd never smile again..." See more »
[Persuading Leonora to attend a charm school]
You're not going just to get a better job. A charm school is like college and finishing school combined.
I can read, Maxine.
Well, all I can say is, without a social education, you're never gonna' meet a real man.
What'sa matter with George?
Well, he'll never be able to buy you a mink coat.
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In 1947, in Los Angeles, an ambitious waitress from Denver dreams on marrying a millionaire. She joins the Dorothy Dale's School of Charm with financial difficulties and after the conclusion of the course, she changes her name to Leonora Eames (Barbara Bel Geddes) and starts modeling in a fancy shop. She is invited by Franzi Kartos (Curt Bois), who is the assistant of the wealthy Smith Ohlrig (Robert Ryan), to go to a party in the Ohlrig's yacht and she meets him in the harbor by chance. She refuses a one-night stand with Ohlrig and the powerful man decides to get married with her to have her. Sooner Leonora learns that money does not necessarily bring happiness and love and she unsuccessfully asks the divorce, but Ohlrig refuses. Leonora leaves Ohlrig and the luxury life in Long Island and finds a job of receptionist of the obstetrician Dr. Hoffman (Frank Ferguson) and the pediatrician Larry Quinada (James Mason) in the East Side. Leonora does not work well and she quits her job. Meanwhile Ohlrig visits her and tells that he misses her and Leonora returns to the mansion in Long Island. Sooner she finds that the invitation was just a notion of Ohlrig and she returns to the East Side. Dr. Quinada and she fall in love for each other, but Leonora finds that she is pregnant from Ohlrig. She feels divided between her love for Quinada and the security of her baby with Ohlrigand she needs to take a decision.
"Caught" is a melodramatic story about a woman whose dream is to get married with a wealthy man that finds that she has been bought by her husband to live as a decorative wife living like a prisoner in a golden cage. Robert Ryan performs another villain, as usual, and the cinematography in black and white and framing follow the usual standard of Max Ophüls. This film is wrongly classified as film-noir. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "Coração Prisioneiro" ("Prisoner Heart")
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