Mary Herries has a passion for art and fine furniture. Even though she is getting on in years, she enjoys being around these priceless articles. One day she meets a strange young painter ... See full summary »
The story, told in eight episodes, covers different facets of the American Spirit, from racial and religious tolerance to the dangers of self-centeredness and myopic reasoning. The parables... See full summary »
Lil works for the Legendre Company and causes Bill to divorce Irene and marry her. She has an affair with businessman Gaerste and uses him to force society to pay attention to her. She has ... See full summary »
A young working girl, trying to just find a way to get a seat on the subway takes a baby doll to insure a way. Only she get stuck in a thick plot to sell an ad to a rich client who thinks ... See full summary »
Shortly after the end of World War II, British Colonel Michael 'Hooky' Nicobar is assigned to a unit in the British Zone of Vienna. His duty is to aid the Soviet authorities to repatriate ... See full summary »
A former reporter comes back home after serving in the army during World War I and finds that it's much more difficult to find work than he expected. Desperate, one day he crashes a wedding... See full summary »
The beautiful and frivolous wife of a plantation owner in antebellum Louisiana, proves unsatisfactory at running the household, leading her serious-minded husband to enlist the help of her unmarried sister.
A woman and a man vying for a woman's affection: the usual love trio? Not quite so since the belle in question is Lorraine de Grissac, a very wealthy and alluring society woman, while one ... See full summary »
The temperamental Carol Maldon leaves New York behind to take control of her father's stable, she inherited. Rick Grayton is a horse racing trainer who lucked into training a champ, the ... See full summary »
Fresh out of medical school, young Dr. James Kildare decides to leave his father's country practice and take up a position at a large New York hospital. There he meets the famous Dr. ... See full summary »
Mary Herries has a passion for art and fine furniture. Even though she is getting on in years, she enjoys being around these priceless articles. One day she meets a strange young painter named Elcott, who uses his painting skill to enter into her life. Little does she expect that his only interest in Mary is to covet everything she has. Written by
Tony Fontana <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I realise that my passion for the Golden Age of Hollywood - the mid '30s to the mid '60s - has little to do with such popular genres as Westerns, Musicals and Film Noir; rather is it the Romantic cinema I adore. In the hands of a master director such as William Wyler the genre achieved greatness ( "Carrie", "The Heiress", "Wuthering Heights" and "The Best Years Of Our Lives"). Even works that are little more than good yarns ("Gone With The Wind", "All This And Heaven Too" and "Kings Row") leave me speechless with admiration for their sheer craftsmanship and style. I have to confess to swallowing with considerable pleasure what may be regarded as a by-product of the genre, Hollywood Gothic melodrama, the more outlandish the better ("The Spiral Staircase", "Dragonwyck" or "Ladies in Retirement"). When the genre depicted Victorian or Edwardian London as it so often did I am apt to experience frissons of delight ("Gaslight", "Moss Rose" or "Hangover "Square"). I thought I knew them all until one of our TV channels came up with one I had never heard of, John Sturges's "Kind Lady" of 1951. What a discovery! The eponymous heroine is played by that most commanding of Hollywood matriarchs, Ethel Barrymore, she of the gravel voice and penetrating eyes. It was rare for her to play the tormented party but somehow you know from the beginning that here is a character with the inner strength to overcome the wiles of her tormentors. If the film has a weakness it lies in Maurice Evans's rather colourless arch-villain. Although I have not seen the earlier version of "Kind Lady" I can well imagine the Basil Rathbone who played the part could convey evil with more sinister aplomb. But everything else about the film is absolutely right. Hollywood seemed to have a particular obsession with plots where villains attempted to drive their victims insane or else present them as insane to the rest of the world. If George Cukor's "Gaslight" is probably the finest example "Kind Lady" runs it a close second. With Ethel Barrymore's fine performance and excellent support from Betsy Blair, an amazingly young Angela Lansbury and John Williams as the solicitor who is bound to come to the rescue, superbly accomplished photography from Joseph Ruttenberg who did marvels with "The Great Waltz" and "Mrs Miniver" and a wonderfully lyrical score by David Raksin, to my mind the finest of all the Hollywood in-house composers, what more can one ask. Unadulterated pleasure!
16 of 18 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?