Oxford Professor Richard Myles and new bride Frances are off on a European honeymoon. It isn't your typical honeymoon though, for they are on a spying mission for British intelligence on ... See full summary »
It's 1930 in a European metropolis. Lisa Koslov, a young, innocent woman, is a student of piano at the city's music conservatory. She is without her mother for a few days for the first time in her life, her mother, out of town on family business, who she cannot turn to at this time for advice in dealing with the advances of an older man, who she will learn is famed composer/conductor/pianist Michael Michailow. Despite not feeling that spending time with Michael is the right thing, she is unable to fend off his advances, which he is able to manipulate to his advantage. Lisa is on a night out at a cabaret with Michael when the cabaret's aging singer, Vera Kowalska, spots Lisa and Michael in the audience, Vera who shoots Michael dead before he and Lisa can leave. At Vera's murder trial where Lisa is among the eyewitnesses testifying for the prosecution, Vera readily admits that she shot Michael, but she will not talk otherwise to defend herself by providing justifying reasons for her ...Written by
Director Joe May was so determined to make this a close remake of the German film Mazurka (1935) that he kept a print of "Mazurka" on the set and frequently ran sections of it, to the annoyance of the new film's cast. In addition to copying the German original shot-by-shot in many scenes, this film also reuses the original score and songs. See more »
Kay Francis gives what is probably her best, most stunning performance in "Confession" - a near shot-by-shot remake of a 1935 Pola Negri soaper called "Mazurka" about a mother/singer who kills her former lover (Basil Rathbone) as soon as she finds out that he is about court her daughter (Jane Bryan). She is put on trial and asked to recount her story. This is a pretty much a routine "Madame X" weepie about maternal sacrifice but under the direction of Joe May, a German emigré who once collaborated with Fritz Lang in Germany, it becomes an amazingly stylish melodrama with sprawling narrative, expressionist outbursts, inventive camera movements, and interesting use of flashbacks. The final moments after the trial are tragic and sad. I love all Kay Francis' movies; "Confession", I think, is her very best.
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