The working class twin sister of a callous wealthy woman impulsively murders her out of revenge and assumes the identity of the dead woman. But impersonating her dead twin is more complicated and risky than she anticipated.
A piano teacher believes that her fiancé, a cellist, was killed on the battlefield. When he returns alive, they marry, but are menaced and threatened by a wealthy, egotistical composer she started dating on the rebound.
Charlotte Hollis, an aging recluse deluded into a state of dementia by horrible memories and hallucinations, lives in a secluded house where, thirty-seven years before, John Mayhew her married lover, was beheaded and mutilated by an unknown assailant. Written by
Well, I loved Bette Davis' performances, as a rule. But I'm willing to bet that even NON fans of Davis would appreciate her tour in this particular movie. Following two years after "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?", "Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte" is nevertheless four times the film of its more noted predecessor. The reasons for this are four=fold. The script, though occasionally unintentionally funny, is still crisper, more believable and contains a more satisfying ending. Next, Davis' is more balanced by the performances of DeHavilland, Cotton, a more mature Victor Buono, and the great Agnes Morehead. Thirdly, we have a better set and setting, more attuned to the genre. Finally, the cinematography is several notches better, in my opinion. Adding it all up, you have an exceptionally fine example of that unique genre, the gothic melodrama. In this movie, the genre is virtually defined! If asked to name an example to a "top twenty" or "top fifty" movie list, "Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte" would definitely make the cut.
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