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Eric Busch, a novelist/playwright, and his wife, Janet, go to New York where he arranges to have Matt Saxon, who has a reputation for ruthlessness, produce his play. Saxon insists on so many meetings, changes and revisions that it cause a rift between Eric and Janet. Saxon goes to Hollywood to get a prominent actor to play the lead but the actor, no fan of Saxon, declines. Saxon then deliberately robs his own girlfriend of her chance in Hollywood. The actor then comes to New York and offers to do the play, if someone other than Saxon is the producer. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Robert Montgomery patterned his portrayal of a ruthless Broadway producer who lets nothing stand in the way of getting what he wants, after Jed Harris, a noted Broadway impresario who had the same reputation. See more »
As my wife and I sat watching "The Saxon Charm", I could see my wife getting very frustrated with the film. After all, the lead in this film (Robert Montgomery) was a thoroughly despicable and awful person...and she obviously was hating him...hating him so much she wanted me to turn off the film. Well, needless to say, I convinced her to keep watching and we both are glad we stuck with this one...as it was terribly well written and acted.
Matt Saxon (Robert Montgomery) was apparently based on a real Broadway producer, Jed Harris, and that is a big strength of the film. This is because although Saxon's behaviors and manipulations were hard to believe, it made it easier to watch the film knowing that he was not some exaggerated and unreal character! And what a character...charming but also very manipulative, cruel, selfish and without any trace whatsoever of a conscience. As a retired therapist, he was an excellent portrait of an Antisocial Personality Disorder with Borderline traits. In other words...a hellishly awful person from top to bottom!!
So how does Saxon fit into the story? Well, a successful young writer (John Payne) has decided to try writing a play and Saxon has convinced him that he is willing to put on the play. But again and again, Saxon strings him along--having him write and re-write the play...and taking him away from his young wife (Susan Hayward) and effectively destroying the marriage. Why? Mostly because Saxon is like a cat...and he needs to mouse to torment to give his sick life meaning.
The bottom line is that this is really very well written and it's among Robert Montgomery's best performances. Not always pleasant...but very captivating!
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