7.9/10
5,151
64 user 25 critic

Seance on a Wet Afternoon (1964)

A medium and her husband stage a kidnapping in order for her to pretend to solve the crime and achieve fame.

Director:

Bryan Forbes

Writers:

Mark McShane (novel), Bryan Forbes (written for the screen by)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kim Stanley ... Myra Savage
Margaret Lacey Margaret Lacey ... Woman at First Seance
Marie Burke ... Woman at First Seance
Maria Kazan Maria Kazan ... Woman at First Seance
Lionel Gamlin Lionel Gamlin ... Man at Seances
Marian Spencer Marian Spencer ... Mrs. Wintry
Richard Attenborough ... William Henry 'Bill' Savage
Godfrey James Godfrey James ... Mrs. Clayton's Chauffeur
Judith Donner Judith Donner ... Amanda Clayton - The Child
Ronald Hines Ronald Hines ... Policeman Outside Clayton's
Hajni Biro Hajni Biro ... Carla - Maid at Clayton's
Mark Eden ... Mr. Charles Clayton
Nanette Newman ... Mrs. Clayton
Diana Lambert Diana Lambert ... Sheila - Mr. Clayton's Secretary
Frank Singuineau Frank Singuineau ... Bus Conductor
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Storyline

Myra and Billy Savage are a married couple living in London. Myra works as a medium, who holds weekly meetings, séances, for a regular group of customers, while Billy supports her in these ventures, as he does not otherwise work, due to his asthma. "Arthur" is her spirit guide, who was their stillborn son. Myra is the dominant in the couple, Billy, the weak-minded follower. Myra, with Billy's support, devises a scheme to raise her public prominence as a medium: kidnap Amanda Clayton, the young daughter of a wealthy couple, and using her psychic powers provide information to the Claytons and the police of Amanda and the requested ransom money's whereabouts. Myra and Billy view this scheme as a victimless crime, if a crime at all, as they don't plan on harming Amanda, and they are returning the requested ransom. To carry out the scheme successfully, they will have to: kidnap Amanda; convince Amanda that her temporary captivity is not out of the ordinary, while having her not be able to ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Two of the greatest performers you will ever see... See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 November 1964 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Al filo del abismo See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£143,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Simone Signoret and Deborah Kerr were initially considered for role of Myra. See more »

Goofs

As Myra looks outwards through the rain spattered window of a child's nursery, the rain falls unnaturally onto the panes - in two bursts - as though it were sprays from a hose or watering can. See more »

Quotes

Myra Savage: You know what I sometimes wish? I sometimes wish I *were*... ordinary. Like you. Dead ordinary. Ordinary and *dead* like all the others.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Richard Attenborough: A Life in Film (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Hear my Prayer
Written by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Played by George Thalben-Ball (as Sir George Thalben-Ball) (organ)
Sung by Ernest Lough
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Seance on a Wet Afternoon is a great British suspense film
9 May 2008 | by tavmSee all my reviews

This was a British picture that I had long wanted to see so when I went to my local library and found this there, I quickly checked it out. Kim Stanley and Richard Attenborough are perfectly chilling as the séance wife Myra and reluctant kidnapper Billy. Judith Donner, in her only role, brings a subtle naturalness as the child Amanda who they "borrow" from a wealthy couple. Also good were Mark Eden and Nanette Newman, who's married to the film's director Bryan Forbes, as the child's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Clayton. John Barry's score brings various shades in many chase scenes and some quietly chilling ones involving Myra and Billy. And Forbes brings measured tension in many point-of-view shots. The suspense involves psychological emotions that cut to the bone and brings a compellingly British flavor to the concluding scenes. So for all that, I highly recommend Seance on a Wet Afternoon.


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