The lady is Mrs. Hilyard, a wealthy poetess who lives in a three-story city mansion and her cage is her elevator, which stops a dozen feet short of the main floor due to an electrical failure on a July 4th weekend. She rings her outside alarm, eventually noticed by a drunken derelict, who breaks into the house, ignores her plight and helps himself to various items and alcohol. He leaves with his loot but returns a while later with a curvy prostitute and three teenage hoodlums, who proceed to terrorize Mrs. Hilyard as they wreck her home.Written by
According to a July 10, 1962 letter, Joan Crawford was set to play the lead in this film. Crawford says: "I've finished The Caretakers (1963) now, and am deep in rehearsals with Bette Davis on What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962). We will start shooting the picture on the 23rd, for four weeks. Then I hope to fly to New York with the twins to put them in school, and will return to Los Angeles to make 'Lady in a Cage'." See more »
The battery for the alarm is shown as it runs down; but later in the movie the battery works like new. See more »
Thriller has some contrivances but also enough touches of reality to make it unsettling and disturbing. Olivia is effective as she works up to different levels of hysteria at a believable pace rather than going full bore from the beginning. Ann Sothern is a sad blowzy mess managing to engender sympathy for her character even though she does some disreputable things. James Caan is full of menace and an uncomfortable sexuality in his feature film debut, his simpleton comrades are frightening in their careless disregard for humanity. This is economically directed with a minimum of wasted scenes and a talented cast but the theme of home invasion is to real to provide much in the way of escapist entertainment.
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