Ruth Gordon wears a red wig throughout much of the movie. One film critic for the New York Times remarked in his review of the film that the wig made Gordon look like a "crazy animated peanut." See more »
During the murder sequence that precedes the opening credits, Claire Marrable hits her housekeeper over the head with a rock whilst they are planting a tree and then shoves the woman into the hole. The older actress playing the housekeeper delivers a few lines in close-up just prior to her death and is clearly not the much younger stunt double who falls into the hole moments later. See more »
If you want to live like some duchess or maharani you had better learn to behave like one!
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Not-so-grieving widow Claire Marrable is horrified to hear that her supposedly wealthy husband has apparently left her penniless. But, being a practical (and resourceful) type, she hits on a scheme to keep her in the comfort to which she wishes to become accustomed. Relocating to the Arizona desert, she hires elderly housekeepers with no known relatives (but tidy nest eggs) and sends them to their rewards a bit sooner than they planned. And their remains become mulch for the widow's growing garden as each is buried under a quickly flourishing sapling. This later entry in the "horror hag" sweepstakes features absolutely wonderful performances from Geraldine Page, who has a high old time as the haughty, demented and thoroughly relentless Mrs. Marrable, and Ruth Gordon, as Alice Dimmock, her new housekeeper, who isn't quite what she seems to be. On the sidelines are Rosemary Forsyth, herself a (young) widow with a nephew, Robert Fuller as Miss Gordon's nephew, and Joan Huntington as the scheming wife of Page's nephew. With a cast made up of widows and nephews, how scary can "Aunt Alice" be? Not very. But it's a delicious black comedy which allows Page and Gordon the opportunity to give the performances of their lives. There's also a neat cameo from Mildred Dunnock ("Death Of A Salesman") as the luckless servant who precedes Miss Gordon. One of the best "Grand Guignol" films ever made!
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