The story of a young woman, Helen Banning, who travels to Munich in search of life experience and romance. While working for America House, she meets a famous symphony conductor, Tonio ... See full summary »
An aging heir-less millionaire wants to leave his fortune to the unsuspecting family of his first love but not before testing his prospective heirs by living with them under the guise of a poor boarder.
Clifford Groves, toy manufacturer, is in full charge at the factory but feels left out and taken for granted by his wife and children at home. Alone and depressed, he meets old flame Norma, and one thing leads to another. While their relationship is still fairly innocent, his son Vinnie sees them together and suspects the worst. It's time for tortured souls behind rain-streaming windows...Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Although Gigi Perreau was cast as the older sister, Judy Nugent, who was cast as the younger sister, was in fact 1 year older then her. See more »
Near the end of the film, Cliff bumps the toy robot on the table, starting it walking towards the camera and he walks back to the shop window. The camera starts tracking forward and as the toy robot is walking forwards out of the shot, bottom left, the shadow of the camera falls across the toy robot. See more »
Norma Miller Vale:
Love is a very reckless thing. Maybe it isn't even a good thing. When you're young and in love, nothing matters except your own satisfaction. The tragic thing about growing older is that you can't be quite as reckless anymore.
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Yet another impressive Douglas Sirk melodrama centring on the contemporary American family and in this particular film the American husband / father figure. Most of the Sirk movies I've seen seem to put women at the heart of the action but here the emotional crisis is thrust upon Fred MacMurray's toy salesman, a conventional, dutiful husband and father to his three growing children, one boy on the verge of adulthood, one daughter in her late teen, mildly rebellious years and another somewhat childish younger teenager. His wife, played by Joan Bennett, seems preoccupied with the needs and wants of these rather selfish children to the point where she seems ignorant of the effect the cumulative family disinterest is having on his emotional needs.
Just as he's feeling especially insignificant along comes old flame Barbara Stanwyck in her third fine film with MacMurray to fan the sparks of his mid-life crisis into a full-blown blazing passion, to the extent where he has a secret if accidental weekend away with her and quickly comes to contemplate leaving his family for a life of excitement with her. Which way will he turn and what part will his two mortified older children, who in typical Sirkian grand coincidental fashion, learn of his plans, play in his final decision?
Once again, Sirk brings family members to a crisis-point and even if the resolution this time takes a conventional course, still there's real drama in these excellently crafted and written scenes of anything but cosy domesticity. Cynics may make sneering remarks about all this amounting to shallow soap operatics but I think they would be wrong. Post-War Western and especially American society was evolving even against the "I Like Ike" background of greater personal wealth and the growth in consumerism but just under the surface it wasn't all sweetness and light and Sirk was one director who caught that change in attitudes in his mid-50's work.
Once again MacMurray surprised me with the depth and roundedness of his performance as a middle-aged man cornered by society's expectations of him while Stanwyck in one of her last major roles before she, like MacMurray a bit later, turned to TV, is as good as she usually is as the unwitting Eve in Fred's supposed Garden of Eden. Her character of a flamboyant, self-confident, but importantly unmarried career-woman is equally worthy of deeper investigation as MacMurray's worm-turning Mr Suburbia.
Lesser known than other Sirk dramas of the decade it's as good as any of them in my opinion and well worth watching.
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