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The Velvet Touch (1948)

Unrated | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | 13 July 1948 (USA)
Broadway star Valerie Stanton, breaking up with her producer-lover Gordon Dunning, unintentionally kills him. In flashback, she recalls meeting new flame Michael Morrell, and Dunning's ... See full summary »

Director:

(as John Gage)

Writers:

(screen play), (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Captain Danbury
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Ernie Boyle
Walter Kingsford ...
Peter Gunther
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Paul Banton
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Susan Crane
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Nancy
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Judge Brack / Actor in 'Hedda Gabler': Judge Brack
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Albert
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Pansy Dupont
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Storyline

Broadway star Valerie Stanton, breaking up with her producer-lover Gordon Dunning, unintentionally kills him. In flashback, she recalls meeting new flame Michael Morrell, and Dunning's machinations leading to the fatal argument. The next day, it appears that Valerie's former rival Marian Webster is the prime suspect. Or is suave police Captain Danbury just playing cat and mouse with her? Nicely catty dialogue. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"You can get away with anything if you've got it...Anything"


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 July 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Voz da Consciência  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the few sympathetic roles ever played by Sydney Greenstreet. See more »

Goofs

In scenes set in Sardi's restaurant, many of the framed caricatures on the wall are full-figure sketches; in reality, all of Sardi's famous caricatures are face-only portraits. See more »

Quotes

Jeff Trent: Now don't do anything until I've said you've done it.
Valerie Stanton: How could I?
See more »

Soundtracks

The Velvet Touch
Written by Mort Greene & Leigh Harline
[Title song sung by male chorus during opening title and credits]
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User Reviews

 
Rosalind Russell fails to use the velvet touch...
14 June 2007 | by See all my reviews

ROSALIND RUSSELL is a stage actress who accidentally murders a lecherous producer (LEON AMES) in this melodramatic show biz story that has Russell trapped in a web of deception after killing Ames. Their stormy relationship is revealed in flashbacks as Russell thinks back on what led up to the murder.

Unfortunately, Russell lends not a velvet touch to the proceedings, but an artificial one. Her stage actress is full of Russell's most studied mannerisms, including shifty-eyed side glances whenever pangs of guilt are displayed. She's all artifice, but because she's playing a stage actress I suppose it's forgivable. Still, a little less posturing and more real acting would have helped.

CLAIRE TREVOR, as her rival on and off the stage, does a less mannered job as the hard-boiled other woman. LEO GENN is the architect who never goes to the theater and doesn't know Russell at all. It is he who comes between Ames and Russell once she decides she loves him.

Some of the plot contrivances are not exactly believable. Genn's sudden interest in the actress is one of them, as is their quickly falling in love. Forty-five minutes into the story SYDENY GREENSTREET makes his appearance to investigate the case and from this point on interest in the outcome mounts steadily as the investigation goes forward.

But the whole story is hardly handled with any subtlety. No melodramatic moment is overlooked by actress Russell or director John Gage. And that goes for the cat-and-mouse game Greenstreet plays with Russell. He plays his role with finesse, but it's the script that finally defeats everyone, especially Russell whose guilt complex is overplayed throughout.

Summing up: Interesting with some good moments but obvious. Trevor and Greenstreet steal the show, but Genn is wasted and Russell is ultimately a disappointment.

Trivia note: Expensive theater tickets were $4.80 in 1948.


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