Bachelor Harry Quincey, head designer in a small-town cloth factory, lives with his selfish sisters, glamorous hypochondriac Lettie and querulous widow Hester. His developing relationship ... See full summary »
Jenny Marsh, still dangerously attractive after 5 years in prison for killing a man in defense of her shady lover Harry, clashes at first with parole officer Griff Marat, who's determined ... See full summary »
Jerry McKibbon is a tough, no nonsense reporter, mentoring special prosecutor John Conroy in routing out corrupt officials in the city, which may even include Conroy's own police detective father as a suspect.
A serial killer in London is murdering young women whom he meets through the personal columns of newspapers; he announces each of his murders to the police by sending them a cryptic poem. ... See full summary »
A well-known judge has become a fugitive from the police, with a large reward on his head. A reporter believes that the judge is hiding in a private sanitarium, so she seeks out a private ... See full summary »
A man is found murdered, with witnesses convinced about the woman they saw leaving his apartment. However, it becomes apparent that the woman has a twin, and finding out which one is the killer seems impossible.
Olivia de Havilland,
Slick suspenser from United Artists. Courtland (Ameche) has an elaborate plot to kill his wife, Alison (Colbert), get her money, and shack-up with mistress Daphne (Brooks). Good thing Bruce (Cummings) takes a covert romantic interest in Alison otherwise she'd be toast. The material may be derivative but director Sirk knows how to smooth out the rough spots, maybe too much so. The suspense never really kicks in. I suspect that's because Ameche's too bland to generate needed menace. (Perhaps he was looking to modify his nice guy screen image, but not too much.)Thus bad things happen to a drugged-up Alison, but in serial fashion without the driving dark force behind it. Instead Coulouris (Vernay) conveys what evil sense there is. As a result, the narrative builds, without intensifying.
Nonetheless, the movie has its momentsthe train's sudden passage that had me clutching my chair, the sudden shattering of the office door, the plunge through the corkscrew staircase. But most memorable to this noir fan is Hazel Brooks. She's the most commanding spider woman I've seen in years of viewing. Icy, majestic, sensual, no wonder Courtland conspires to dump the ordinary-looking Alison. I love that scene where she sits, bare legged, in an elevated queenly chair while commoner Courtland supplicates from below. I wish there were more bio on her all-too-brief career.
All in all, it's decent noir but minus the character edges to make it memorable.
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