7.1/10
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Another Man's Poison (1951)

In an isolated house, mystery writer Janet Frobisher is involved in potentially murderous relationships.

Director:

Irving Rapper

Writers:

Leslie Sands (play), Val Guest (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Janet Frobisher
Gary Merrill ... George Bates
Emlyn Williams ... Dr. Henderson
Anthony Steel ... Larry Stevens
Barbara Murray ... Chris Dale
Reginald Beckwith Reginald Beckwith ... Mr. Bigley
Edna Morris Edna Morris ... Mrs. Bunting
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Storyline

Mystery writer Janet Frobisher lives alone in a dark English country house, when she's not philandering with her secretary's fiancée. At an extremely awkward moment, she has an unwelcome visitor: George Bates, who claims to be the partner in crime of Janet's estranged husband. George insinuates himself into Janet's home and life despite her efforts to get rid of him; the tangled relationships develop into a macabre, murderous cat-and-mouse game. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

She Had Everything You Could Give A Woman To Torment A Man!

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Film-Noir

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 January 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gift für den Anderen See more »

Filming Locations:

England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Angel Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer Daniel M. Angel was able to persuade Bette Davis to come to Britain to make this film by obtaining the services of her frequent Hollywood collaborator, Irving Rapper, as director. However, he claimed, she treated Rapper very badly throughout filming and barely paid any attention to his direction; nor was she polite to the English actors and crew. See more »

Quotes

George Bates: I do not like the human race / I do not like its silly face / But give me a puppy for a friend / And I'll be faithful to the end.
See more »

Soundtracks

STARDUST
(uncredited)
Written by Hoagy Carmichael and Mitchell Parish
Used instrumentally (character Janet plays record)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Marital Masquerade
22 April 2012 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Real life married couple Bette Davis and Gary Merrill went to the United Kingdom to do this feature film based on a play by Leslie Sands. Another Man's Poison had no run on Broadway so I had no cast in which to compare the movie cast with. I would dearly have loved to know who the original British cast was, that would prove interesting.

With her clipped New England speech, Bette Davis like Katharine Hepburn had no trouble doing occasional English roles, Davis in fact did the best of them all, their good Queen Elizabeth on two occasions. Here she's something less than a Queen, she's a willful manipulator of people and events something I'm guessing she picked up in her profession as an Agatha Christie type mystery writer.

Before the events of the film start we learn that Bette is estranged from her husband whom none of the villagers in the small hamlet in the United Kingdom have met. She says he's in Malaya growing rubber on a plantation, but in fact he's a bank robber and he came there looking for her to give him shelter and a hideout. Instead because she's got big eyes for Anthony Steel, the fiancé of her secretary Barbara Murray she kills her husband and hides the body.

When to start the action in walks Gary Merrill her husband's accomplice in the robbery and also a wanted man. When the local veterinarian Emlyn Williams comes to call Merrill pretends he's long lost husband and Davis backs him up.

Which starts a relationship of convenience for both Davis and Merrill both stuck with each other, but both needing each other to some degree. But with Bette manipulating to trap Steel at the same time the whole situation just simmers to a boil in the end.

Best in the cast is Emlyn Williams. His veterinarian comes over like a country bumpkin, but he's really quite astute, almost like a rural English Columbo. Over here they would have the veterinarian the lead in a television series.

Not top drawer Bette Davis, but in fact her bravura acting style carries this film over some rough patches. Another, a lesser actress might have not done as much with the material, but Bette Davis certainly could and did.


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