The life of spoiled rich Robert Merrick is saved through the use of a hospital's only resuscitator, but because the medical device cannot be in two places at once, it results in the death ... See full summary »
John M. Stahl
1959. Guilty of a double-murder, a man is beheaded. At the bottom of the basket that just welcomed it, the head of the dead man tells his story: everything was going so well. Admired priest... See full summary »
When churlish, spoiled rich man Bob Merrick foolishly wrecks his speed boat, the rescue team resuscitates him with equipment that's therefore unavailable to aid a local hero, Dr. Wayne Phillips, who dies as a result. Phillips had helped many people, and when Merrick learns Phillips' secret, to give selflessly and in secret, he tries it in a ham-handed way. The result further alienates Phillips' widow, Helen, with whom Merrick has fallen in love. Merrick's persistence causes another tragedy, and he must remake his life, including going back to medical school, in an attempt to make amends and win her love.Written by
Fairy-tale coloured technicolour eye-candy from Sirk.
Bob Merrick (Rock Hudson) gets his commuppance and learns to be not such a reckless rich twat, with the help of a fairy godfather and falling in love with a woman he made go blind!
If you've never heard of Douglas Sirk, be prepared that this will be melodrama city. Production values are superb, though. Sirk was a very talented craftsman, as well as creating a beautiful aesthetic for these films.
Sirk made the hospital and the classic American home look as artificial and sanitised as he could: with lipstick so bright and full the lips jump off the faces, sculpted hair and good looks, everything in its right place and colours so stark it looks like a children's colour book. These locales are contrasted with a couple of other places, darkly beautiful: the scene where Rock is sitting at a bar, which starts with the rather loose and drunk looking woman leaning up against the wall, with curls of cigarette smoke and beautiful light in the background. The other is the night scene in Paris, with such exquisite light coming through the doors of the apartment.
Rock is actually pretty good in the film, and really perfect looking. I can see why Sirk picked him out - he's a Ken doll - playing the fantasy American: rich, beautiful and devil-may-care. And after this flick, he was also a star.
3/5. I liked La Habanera better, though.
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