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Joseph H. Lewis
Dame May Whitty,
A mousy drugstore manager turns killer after his conniving wife leaves him for another man. He devises a complex plan, which involves assuming a new identity, to make it look like someone else murdered her new boyfriend. Things take an unexpected turn when someone else commits the murder first and he becomes the prime suspect. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <email@example.com>
"Tension" was shooting at about the same time in 1949 as Side Street (1949), and the latter film utilizes the pharmacy set and its phone booth to allow Farley Granger to make a phone call. See more »
Near the end, Warren Quimby puts both his hands in his pockets while facing the camera and talking. Then, in a reverse shot from behind, he is seen with his hands out of his pockets and putting them in again. See more »
Richard Basehart-an actor who never received the roles his talent merited-plays Warren Quimby a drugstore employee whose modest salary and aspirations frustrate his more avaricious wife Clare,played woodenly by Audrey Trotter.She leaves him for a wealthy operator ,Barney Deager,who compounds Quimbys misery by beating him up in front of Clare He resolves to take on another identity and kill Deager but while having the opportunity cannot bring himself to do it However Deager is murdered shortly after and suspicion falls on him.The rest of the movie centres on the investigation by the devious and shrewd police detective Collier Bonnabel (Barry Sullivan)and his attempt to get at the truth
It is not a who done it as the identity of the killer is never in doubt and instead the focus is on how the culprit will be revealed The performance ,the pouty and sulky Trotter aside ,are solid and the direction by John Berry brisk and to the point
It is not a major thriller but solid studio genre film making and worth the less than 90 minutes of your time that will be taken in watching it.
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