Jane Osgood runs a lobster business, which supports her two young children. Railroad staff inattention ruins her shipment, so with her lawyer George, Jane sues Harry Foster Malone, director of the line and the "meanest man in the world".
American couple Janet and Mike move to England for his business. She soon becomes paranoid that he is having an affair with his attractive secretary, and decides to get back at him by pretending she herself has been unfaithful.
Her new husband's behaviour convinces Julie Benton that his jealousy is dangerous, and when he admits he killed her first husband she realises she has to get away. A long-time friend helps all he can, but even in a town the size of San Francisco, Benton seems able to track them down. The police can do nothing despite a death threat, so the next move is up to Julie. Written by
Jeremy Perkins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The writer-director (and producer of many other films, although not this one) Andrew L. Stone was only nominated once for an Academy Award for Best Screenplay, and he was very proud of this one. I worked for Stone in the mid-1970's, and he looked back at "JULIE" as a piece of his finest work.
The maniacal husband-as-stalker was a new kind of character for films in 1956. The honest discussion of how law enforcement often failed 'women in jeopardy' brought up issues which only became widely discussed in the 1970's.
Doris Day plays the role of a terrorized wife trying to escape from the husband who is trying to kill her, and this is such a well-done treatment of the subject that even jaded audiences today respond to it.
The climactic scene in which Doris Day lands the passenger plane with help from the control tower is riveting, because it is based on fact. Andrew L. Stone was an exhaustive researcher, and you can be sure every detail of that scene was checked and re-checked. It would have happened in real life just as you see it on the screen.
Stone kept a collection of 'true crime' magazines dating from the 1930's in his office library, and he had dozens of plot ideas for thrillers like this one. However, he had always been his own boss and not a 'studio man'. Hollywood didn't give him big budgets, and he never had the opportunity to continue his career as Hitchcock did. Mentally sharp through his 80's, Stone spent the last decade of his life trying to put deals together to make movies that never got off the ground. Our loss.
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