(Some Spoilers) Deep and intricate Film-Noir that makes a complete 360 degree turn from start to finish. Young Nancy Monkes, Laraine Day,was given a locket by her friend Karen Willis, Gloria Donovan, and was soon made to give it back by Karen's mom Mrs. Willis, Katherin Emery. Later the locket was lost and Nancy was suspected of stealing it.
Mrs. Monkes ,Helen Thimig, Nancy's mom who worked as a maid for the Willis household finds the missing locket, stuck in little Karen's dress, and returns it to Mrs Willis who then accuses both Nancy of stealing it and Mrs. Monkes of trying to cover up Nancy's transgression. Outraged of her daughter being accused of a crime and letting Mrs. Willis have it leads to Mrs. Monkes losing her job and Nancy suffering deep psychological scares for the rest of her life.
Nancy became a kleptomaniac and her actions destroyed the lives of four men that she knew. One whom's she obviously murdered one who was executed for that murder one who committed suicide and another who went mad and ended up in a sanitarium losing his license as both a doctor and psychiatrist.
The movie "the Locket" starts with what should be the happiest day in Nancy's life,as she's about to get married to John ,Gene Raymond, and ends with the secret of that "locket" and everything that it had to do with Nancy's past come crashing down on her. Harry Blair, Brian Aherne, goes to see John to tell him the truth about his future wife only to be told to either get out or be thrown out of the wedding ceremony which Harry wasn't even invited to.
It's then for some strange reason that Harry knew what Nancy's birthday was, November 3,got John's attention. Telling his story Harry goes back to 1938 when he first met Nancy in Miami but there was more to the story between him and Nancy, much much more. It turns out that Nancy had a previous lover before she met Harry an artist named Norman Clyde, Robert Mitchum,who together with Nancy covered up a murder that she may have committed.
A helpless Kleptomaniac Nancy had a habit of stealing jewelry at high society parties that she and Norman attended. At one of those parties she was caught stealing by one of the persons there her boss Drew Bonner, Richardo Contez, who was later found shot to death. Coming on the scene of Bonner's shooting was Myron Dexter, David Thursby, and with Dexter being the only person found at the murder site he was arrested convicted and sentenced to be executed at New York's Sing Sing prison. Sick and guilt-ridden Norman came to see and plead with Dr.Harry Blair to get his wife Nancy to come clean with the state D.A about Bonner's murder. Norman telling him that Dexter, an Innocent man, is to be executed within 24 hours.
When confronted with Normans story, as well as Norman himself, Nancy just shrugs it off telling Harry that Clyde is just jealous of her leaving him. Norman after a good night sleep, from taking the pills that Dr. Blair gave him, comes back to Dr. Blair's office the next day and is unusually clam even though the man who's life he tried to save had been snuffed out by the state of New York the night before. Knowing that he did everything possible that he could and with his consciences clear Norman, after having a casual talk with Dr. Blair, calmly walks out of his office and then jumps out of a window in the doctor's waiting room falling to his death on the streets below.
Harry Blair continuing his story telling John that he later realized, during his stay with Nancy in WWII London, that everything that Norman told him about her was true which lead him to suffer a complete mental and physical breakdown. This left Harry institutionalized for almost five years.
John,despite of what Harry told him, still determined to go through with his wedding to Nancy has the surprise of his life when his mother presents her with the very same locket that started Nancy's slow decent into madness! It was that reminder, of years past, that brought her back to reality and at the same time forced her to face all the damage that she did, to everyone who ever knew or loved her, over the years.
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