The working-class twin sister of a callous, wealthy woman impulsively murders her out of revenge and assumes her identity. But impersonating her dead twin is more complicated and risky than she anticipated.
Aged, wealthy Charlotte Hollis has lived as a recluse in the crumbling family plantation mansion in Hollisport, Louisiana since her father Sam Hollis' death thirty-six years ago. The only people who regularly see her are her hard-as-nails but seemingly loyal housekeeper, Velma Crowther, and her longtime friend and physician, Dr. Drew Bayliss. She has lived there most of her life except for a short stint in London thirty-seven years ago following the vicious murder of her married lover, John Mayhew, at the plantation's summer house while Sam was hosting one of his legendary grand balls in the mansion. She and John had planned to run off together that night, but instead he was bludgeoned to death, his head and right hand severed from his body. Nobody was ever convicted for his murder, but most people believe Charlotte did it after John changed his mind about running off with her. They also believe that Charlotte, whom they haven't seen in years, is a crazy old woman. Conversely, ...Written by
John Megna, who plays the little boy dared to enter Charlotte's "haunted" mansion near the beginning of the film, had also appeared as the bragadocious neighbor boy who spent a memorable summer living next door to Atticus Finch and his family in To Kill a Mockingbird. See more »
Whilst waiting outside the Hollis home, Willis licks and seals the letter for Charlotte. When she opens it, however, it is unsealed. See more »
Well, right here on the public street, in the light of day, let me tell you, Miriam Deering, that murder starts in the heart, and its first weapon is a vicious tongue.
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Following soon after "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane", I originally thought that "Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte" would be a letdown - far from it, in my opinion, much better due a great deal to the cast of great actors and actresses. Bette Davis was in her element in this role of Charlotte, while Olivia de Havilland in the role originally planned for Joan Crawford was superb, and was an inspired piece of accidental casting! Agnes Moorehead deserved her Academy nomination, while Mary Astor was a most welcome sight. Joseph Cotten normally seems very wooden in his parts, but does an excellent job here. The Black and White photography adds a great deal to the mood, and is far better than Colour would have been. The ending was very well planned and carried out, and you feel after the film ends there is something else that happened that the viewer never saw. Get it on Video - it is well worth the experience.
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