Actress Jessica Wells, sister of actor Damon Wells, is on top of her form except when her husband Vance is around. When Vance takes her to the apartment of a theatrical producer she comes home incoherent and Vance is found dead in the vanished producer's hotel suite.Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
A modern Jekyll-and-Hyde pits his skill against the diabolic cunning of a soul-less Svengali- with the life of a beautiful girl at stake! (Print Ad-Poughkeepsie Eagle-News, ((Poughkeepsie, NY)) 7 August 1934) See more »
When Louis Calhern says, "The wish was father to the thought," he is quoting Shakespeare's Henry IV, Part 2. See more »
Damon says he played Rastignac in a performance of the play La Fille du Regiment. This is an opera, and there is no character of that name in it. Rastignac is a character in the novels of Balzac. See more »
Producer Ben Weston:
Now, listen Damon, don't be so cocksure of yourself. You're not out of this thing yet, you know. Did you leave any clues?
Not even a false tooth. Baby, they can turn those bloodhounds lose. All they'll ever know is that ol' Massa Tom got down that river.
See more »
Interesting and unusual movie. It seemed to start out as a routine backstage mystery, but as time went by, it got more and more convoluted. Edward G Robinson plays an actor about to star in a promising new play. Mary Astor is his actress sister about to make a comeback. It seems she was married to a Svengali named Stanley Vance, played by Louis Calhern. Mary was under his spell when he disappeared, until she hears that he died. She then goes to pieces. That sets the stage for the plot. It takes three years for her to recover, she falls in love with Ricardo Cortez, and when she is just about to make her breakthrough, he's back.
Now it gets bizarre. She immediately falls back under his spell - and I'm not kidding. She doesn't respond to anyone but him. Her eyes glaze over. She walks around in a trance. In fact, she acts a lot like the current crop of actors we have coming out of Hollywood today. Anyway, Vance doesn't really care about her, he just wants to cash in on her share of the profits from the play. The problem for Eddie is what to do about it. Well, I won't tell you, except to say it involves a complicated, and totally implausible plan. It really doesn't matter though. If you wouldn't watch this movie for any other reason, watch it for the unbelievable, robotic performance of Mary Astor. It was mesmerizing in it's own right, but it unintentionally bordered on laugh out loud funny. If I have a complaint, it would be that the Code was in full force in 1934. You or I could have come up with a better finale.
7 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this