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Garbo: El espía (2009)
I found it fascinating
"Garbo, The Spy" is the story of Juan Pujol Garcia, probably the most successful double agent in World War II. Garcia's job with British intelligence was to earn Germany's trust and feed their military all kinds of incorrect information. This included his insistence that D-Day would take place in the Pas des Calais rather than Normandy.
Garbo had a network of subagents, all fake people. Before going to London, he told the Germans that he was there - he was really in Lisbon, getting information from the library to send them.
The deception of Pas des Calais/Normandy was remarkable and is beautifully covered in a documentary called Ghost Army, which tells the story of fake units with fake tanks and fake radio calls that were set up to throw off the Germans.
"Garbo, The Spy," as you perhaps discern from the other posts, is somewhat unusual in its format. Personally I liked it. They used movies, real footage, cartoons, and interviews to tell Pujol's story. Possibly the closest to Garcia's story was the Alec Guinness film, "Our Man in Havana," from which several scenes were shown. Classic film buffs will also recognized Leslie Howard, Margaret Lindsay, and others.
Interestingly, Germany bought everything this guy was peddling and gave him the Iron Cross, and he was also brought to Buckingham Palace and given the Medal of Honor.
I say don't miss this, and the documentary footage of the Allies coming into Paris, the look on peoples' faces, and the liberated concentration camp survivors smiling and eating.
One person interviewed was Aline Griffith, the Countess de Romanones, who was an American model who became a spy in the OSS in Spain, eventually marrying Count Romanones. Her books - The Spy Wore Red, etc., make for fun reading.
excellent performance by Zac Efron
As many others have stated, this isn't a film about Ted Bundy on one of his murdering sprees. This is about Bundy himself and how he made his way in the world. Someone said at one point they found themselves rooting for him. I never did, but that's because at my age, it's hard to fool me after all the phonies I've met.
Some people will be disappointed because we didn't get to see all the horror he visited on women, but it was a refreshing change of emphasis here.
To see the young women salivating over him in the courtroom, cheering him on, was both shocking and expected. Real footage was used. I remember women doing that over the Menendez brothers. Part of it is the old takeoff on a Geraldo Show - "Men in Prison and the Women Who Love Them," a phenomenon that happens time and time again. With Bundy, because he was particularly good-looking, it was an even stronger reaction.
Zac Efron is a favorite of mine -he resembles my favorite classic film star, Tyrone Power, and I thought he captured the charm and personality of a whack job really well. Lily Collins is terrific as his girlfriend. Both of these actors are growing into exceptional performers.
In the end "Extremely Wicked" makes a sad statement. Good looks. confidence, and charm will bring you a long way in this world. We've seen it too often. It's time to start looking at people's souls. The external is, after all, only that.
Holland during World War II
Another film about Holland, the Nazis, and the Resistance in World War II is this one from 2016, Riphagen. A true story, and the title character is one of the most reprehensible human beings known to man.
Dries Riphagen (excellently portrayed by Jeroen van Koningsbrugge) is a Dutch traitor who seeks out Jews who are in hiding and offers to keep their jewelry and homes safe for them until they get back. As if any of them are coming back. The slimeball puts everything in a safety deposit box, but it's all for him, not the poor people he robbed.
One interesting thing - I had just seen The Resistance Banker, about a Dutch hero in World War II, before I saw this film. In reviews of both, it was mentioned that the reviewer became confused either by the story or had trouble telling the good guys from the bad guys. I did not have this problem, and I wondered if it was because I was from another generation. I can remember watching The Constant Gardener with someone and having to explain it line by line. Is it that audiences today are used to shorter scenes, need more action, have less of an attention span, or are too easily distracted?
At any rate, this is a film rich in '40s atmosphere, wonderfully acted, and suspenseful. It is definitely worth seeing, although I don't think many people need to be reminded of how cruel and depraved human beings can be. We have enough of them around as it is.
Bankier van het Verzet (2018)
The Dutch Resistance
Bankier van het Verzet, the Resistance Banker from 2018 is the true story of one of the great Dutch heroes, Walraven van Hall, who helped to finance the resistance during World War II.
The acting is superb in all respects, and it is a gripping if simplified story, and it was well-researched by the filmmakers.
Someone said they became confused in the middle - I don't know why, but I wasn't confused.
There are some uncomfortable scenes, but the film does show what the Dutch people suffered at the hands of the Nazis.
One suggestion - watch the film through the credits.
Evil thrives when good men do nothing. Walraven van Hall, his brother, and other resistance members were all good men. And they did plenty.
I have to agree with one of the reviewers here who said: "... the fact remains that John Nettles as Jim Bergerac was and is a surprising success story. I like it and so do millions of others but i feel that no one has really ever explained quite why."
I did like it - how could I not, it has John Nettles. What was interesting to me is that this series made him the European Telly Savalas, but while Bergerac is a good show with beautiful Jersery scenery and Nettles, there isn't anything about its stories or characters that screams "megahit." It's much more low-key than something like Kojack, and his character has no 'who loves ya baby' or lollipops in his mouth, he isn't hard up for cash like Rockford and living in a trailer and dealing with crazy Angel, he's not a brilliant slob like Columbo - If you're expecting some big, flamboyant show, this isn't it.
Throughout the years, the Bergerac character goes through quite a few girlfriends. In the early seasons, he never seemed to like or get along with his ex-father-in-law Charlie Hungerford, portrayed by Terence Alexander. He and his ex-wife Deborah (Deborah Grant) are civil to one another, but then in another season it looked like they might get back together. Later on she and the daughter are basically off the show and Bergerac and his father-in-law are good buddies. Characters come and go, with the regulars being Sean Arnold as Bergerac's boss, Bergerac himself, and Charlie. Later on, Louise Jameson enters as Bergerac's love interest, Susan Young.
I think the secret is Nettles - attractive, with a great voice and a wonderful presence, he was captivating as DCI Barnaby in Midsomer Murders and charming and no-nonsense as Bergerac. He radiates a sexy warmth. I don't know what I was expecting from Bergerac, but when I read it was a huge hit and starred Nettles, I had to see it. I thought to myself, why was this a huge hit? But I kept watching.
I'll Be Watching (2018)
Okay, it's Lifetime - which already tells you all you need to know. So you just want some mindless entertainment. So you watch it. Then you're sorry.
I'll Be Watching is about a young woman, Kate (Janel Parrish) being stalked by a masked man. The police detective on the case, played by Rob Estes, suspects Kate's good buddy Nick might be the stalker. Just one problem - which Kate never mentions. Nick is black, and it's obvious looking at this guy that he's white. So for the first, I don't know, 40 minutes, the detective is sure it's Nick (who, by the way, no one has seen in a while) and she just says, no, it's not Nick. Not no, it's not Nick, because the man who attacked me is white.
Then we get to the really stupid part. The stalker licks her hair, he sucks her cheek, and she never mentions it, so no one tries to get DNA which would have probably told them the identity immediately.
I'll stop there. Awful.
Summer Storm (1944)
good film and performances
SUMMER STORM is an adaptation of a story by Chekov and takes place after the Russian revolution, with a flashback to before it started. An ex-count, Volsky (Horton) brings a manuscript to a publisher (Lee) written by her ex-fiance (Sanders). The manuscript tells the story of a beautiful peasant woman (Darnell) and the deleterious effect she had on several men: the Count himself, her husband, and a judge, Fedor (Sanders), resulting in tragedy.
This is an enjoyable film. Sanders was never more handsome, and he does a wonderful job as a man who can't resist the temptations of the ambitious Olga. Edward Everett Horton is excellent as the annoying, shallow Count. It's always a pleasure to see the beautiful Anna Lee, whom lots of people remember as the elderly Lila Quartermaine on General Hospital.
The gorgeous Darnell was actually in a mini-slump with her boss, Daryl F. Zanuck, when she made this film. It was a step down from The Mark of Zorro, Blood and Sand, Star Dust - now 21 and married, she could no longer play the sweet virgin. She quickly proved to him she could be a seductress, reaching the absolute height of her stardom in the late '40s. Though she never stopped working, alcohol eventually took its toll, and she died in a fire in 1965, age 41. Sadly when she was brought to the hospital, she was coherent and speaking with the doctors, not realizing that she couldn't feel anything and was dying.
The great pretender
Warren William is one of TCM's great gifts, to me, anyway. I enjoy him and his movies.
This is a precode. William is Bob, an x-ray technician whose nurse girlfriend (Jean Muir) gives him the money to complete medical school - $1500 - you couldn't get in the door for that today. He manages to gamble it away before he can even get there, but he returns a year later, supposedly a doctor.
Fate steps in when he meets a morphine addict who is an ex-doctor. In exchange for morphine, the addict hands over his medical license. Bob changes his name and starts practicing in New York City, with his erstwhile girlfriend as his nurse. I forget how he explains the name change but she believes him. He brings on a real doctor (Donald Meeks) who actually diagnoses the patients. He's also somewhat of an inventor, having come up with a process that brings the dead back to life.
Bob isn't actually interested in anything like illness - he wants the society crowd where the women want to be charmed.
Trouble follows - the morphine addict keeps darkening his door, and he gets stuck with some real sickness he has to cure.
Short, enjoyable, with William playing the lovable cad to perfection.
One thing that has impressed me in recent years is the open, nonapologetic corruption among politicians. There used to be underhandedness and putting a PR spin on things - now it's obvious that they're all a bunch of greedy guts out for what they can get at any cost, and to hell with everybody else.
So what's interesting about "Chappaquiddick" is the effort that was made back then to clean up Ted Kennedy's image after the incident, which I remember well. The film sticks very close to history, though there are things we will never know: Were Kennedy and Kopechne having an afffair; how come all those single women were at a weekend party with older married politicians to discuss strategy; how the heck did Kennedy get out of the car and Mary Jo didn't; is it true the stroke-ridden Joe Kennedy (Bruce Dern) could only say to his son - twice - "Alibi"; and finally, did Kennedy just leave Mary Jo there to die or was he really in shock , denial, and disbelief?
The movie can't answer these, except it does appear when the accident first happened that Kennedy was in shock and disbelief. Unfortunately for Mary Jo he never seemed to come out of it. When he did, his first thought was for himself. Instead of calling for help and reporting the incident, he rounded up the Kennedy sycophants, including Robert McNamara and Theo Sorenson, to make him look like a victim and prepare a story. "His doctor says he is in shock and has a concussion," Robert McNamara says. The doctor responds, "I haven't examined the patient." McNamara's response: "That won't be necessary."
However, they screw up at every turn, stating to the New York Times that he's on sedatives, contraindicated for a concussion, releasing Kennedy's statement to the press too soon. and Kennedy's insistence on wearing a neck brace to the funeral and then swiveling his neck all over the place to see who else was there. And the biggest error of all, forgetting about Mary Jo, a young woman with her whole life ahead of her.
Portrayed excellently here by Jason Clarke, Ted Kennedy comes off as a complete wimp determined to be President no matter what and a fledgling alcoholic who let his driver's license expire. More than that, he is portrayed as a man used to people getting him out of trouble.
I have to believe that in the years that followed, Kennedy tried to make up for his horrid behavior. We'll never know. Nobody seemed to care what he'd done; his base just kept electing him.
This is a very straightforward, no frills kind of film, well directed and acted. In the end, you realize that Mary Jo Kopechne (Kate Mara) didn't have much of a role. And that's the point. Acceptable losses.
Green Book (2018)
This film was inspired by the true story of Tony the Lip Villelonga, An Italian-American bouncer (Mortenson) from the Bronx who gets a job driving a black. highly educated and cultured musician (Ali) through the south in 1962.
Really a must-see film for the performances of everyone involved, for a good look at what it was like for blacks in the south, an amazing look at Bronx Italian life, and some great music.
The title refers to "The Negro Motorist Green Book," which advised African-Americans traveling where they could eat and stay.
The real Tony the Lip, by the way, played Carmine in The Sopranos. And great to see my favorite comedian, Maniscalco, in a movie role as Mrs. Villelonga's brother.
Funny, warm, poignant, delightful film with wonderful characters - perfect for the holidays. Don't miss it.The title and subject matter are a reference to "The Negro Motorist Green Book," also known as "The Negro Travelers' Green Book." Published from 1936-1966, the guide helped African-American travelers find lodging, restaurants, and other businesses that would serve them. It eventually covered most of North America, plus Bermuda and the Caribbean.
Funny, warm, and poignant film with wonderful characters - perfect for the holidays. Don't miss it.
Made in Paris (1966)
Paris and stunning Ann-Margret make this a feast for the eyes
Ann-Margret, Louis Jourdan, Chad Everett, and Edie Adams star in this light film which when seen today sets the #metoo movement back 50 years.
Ann-M, whom the boss' son (Everett) is in love with, plays a courtier buyer for a department store, in Paris on her first job. She is replacing another buyer (Edie Adams). Now in the corporate apartment, Ann-M doesn't realize that her predecessor was having a mad fling with one of the designers (Jourdan) as part of their contract.
This is just a frothy romance that is a showcase for the gorgeous, sexy Ann-Margret in glamorous Helen Rose outfits. If you're an Ann-Margret fan, you don't want to miss this.
Where Are My Children? (1916)
The entire Power family appears in this film
I've just finished reading the reviews of this film on IMDb. I think one person realized that Helen Riaume (it was actually Reaume) was actually the real-life wife of the star of the movie, Tyrone Power Sr. Both of their children, Ann Power and the very famous Tyrone Power (1914-1958) are in it as well. Ann probably plays a newborn, and two-year-old Tyrone Power appears at the very end as a "ghost child."
This is certainly a fascinating film. It's thought of as anti-abortion but as others have pointed out, that's just part of the picture. The DA RIchard Walton (Tyrone Power Sr.) is a firm believer in eugenics, which had support in this country before the Aryan race business came out of Nazi Germany. In eugenics, the white upper class had the children and the poor weren't supposed to have them, with the belief that "wanted" children (children of white upper class) would wipe out crime.
The beginning of the story centers around a doctor accused of mailing out contraception material - this is based on the Margaret Sanger case. The DA is a man who has longed to have children, but he and his wife never have. This is because his wife (Riaume) has been having abortions so she can keep up her society engagements. Apparently she's not alone.
Walton learns of this when the abortion doctor bungles a case and is put on trial for murder. It is then that Walton sees his patient book.
During the movie, we see the "unwanted" being returned to heaven - this is 1916, and Lois Weber's use of photography and effects is amazing.
The acting is very good, with Power Sr. a formidable presence and the petite Riaume excellent in the role of a woman with a secret.
This was an extremely controversial film at the time and probably would be today. What a lot of people don't realize is that back when this movie was made, abortion was a form of birth control and, as seen here, practiced by the upper classes.
HIghly recommended - it's a piece of history.
The Night Has Eyes (1942)
James Mason stars in this semi-horror film along with Wilfrid Lawson, Mary Clare, and Joyce Howard.
Joyce plays Marian who, with her horny friend Doris (Tucker McGuire) head for the Yorkshire moors with a mission. Their good friend Evelyn was lost on these moors a year earlier, and Joyce and Doris want to find out what happened to her.
A good-looking doctor (John Fernald) meets the women on the train and offers them a ride. For reasons known only to themselves, they decide to get out and walk at a certain point. A tremendous storm opens the skies, and one of the women is almost lost in the bogs that are like quicksand.
They are saved by an ex-serviceman Stephen (Mason) who lives with a housekeeper and a handyman on the moors. The women have no choice but to spend the night, and, when there's flooding, they have to stay the next day.
Stephen is very brusque, mysterious, and wants them gone. They soon learn why.
Pretty good, atmospheric film with some nice performances. My big problem was that the Joyce Howard character fell madly in love with Mason after knowing him for five minutes.
You'll figure this out pretty quickly, as the direction to the actors (in my opinion) made it obvious. A little underplaying would have been nice on the part of one of the actors.
White Tie and Tails (1946)
lots of fun
Starving artist Charles Dumont (Dan Duryea) takes a job as a butler in a wealthy family and winds up being indispensable to the entire household. When the family leaves for Florida, Charles decides to spend his vacation in the house, looking at all the gorgeous art and drinking the expensive liquor. He asks the chauffeur (Frank Jenks) to act as his driver as, dressed to the nines, he goes around town posing as a wealthy gentleman.
At one club, Charles sees the beautiful heiress Louise Bradford (Ella Rains). He manages to be in her box at the opera, where she has been accompanied by her sister Cynthia, her father, and her very uptight fiance. Cynthia leaves the opera with a gambler who is involved with Larry Lundie (William Bendix), a casino owner.
The family is very distressed about Cynthia's choice of boyfriend; seeing an in with Louise, Charles says that he thinks he can help. Lots of trouble ensues.
Truly delightful comedy with lots happening, including art theft, bad checks, making the perfect martini, and choosing material for suits. Everyone is top notch. Bendix, who often played a buffoon. works against type as a tough guy running a glamorous casino. Duryea isn't nasty or evil but very smooth and elegant.
All in all, fun.
The Feathered Serpent (1948)
love Charlie, what can I say
"The Feathered Serpent" is the only Charlie Chan film featuring both Keye Luke and Victor Sen Yung together as Charlie's sons. Charlie here is portrayed by Roland Winters. He does a very good job, but I prefer Warner Oland in the role. He was also so warm and cheerful. Toler was very good, but more sardonic and sarcastic.
In this film, Charlie and two of his sons are asked to investigate a gang who has kidnapped an archaeologist to force him to search for a treasure in Mexico.
Mantan Moreland plays Charlie's chauffeur, Birmingham. I know his characterization is not politically correct today, but what a funny and talented man he was. I always enjoy him in these films.
By this time, Charlie Chan films were being made at a poverty role studio. As offensive as they are today, I take them for what they were and like them. We cannot view everything from today's viewpoints.
nice performance by Ann Sothern
Ann Sothern is delightful as "Dulcy," a scatterbrained young woman who makes life miserable for weekend guests. The film stars Dan Dailey, Reginald Gardner, Roland Young, Ian Hunter, and Billie Burke.
After meeting an inventor who can't get a meeting with an airline executive, Dulcy decides to help. She has him come to her house when her brother (Dailey), his fiance, and her parents (Young, a major airline executive and Burke) are coming for the weekend. Chaos prevails on every level.
Fun movie with good performances by everyone, particularly an exasperated Roland Young. A perfect vehicle for Sothern.
Girl of the Night (1960)
ahead of its time
A beautiful call girl. Bobbie (Anne Francis) seeks help from a psychiatrist (Lloyd Nolan) for her on-again-off-again relationship with her pimp (John Kerr) whom she wants to marry.
Kay Medford plays the head of the call girl agency, and Kerr, an alcoholic, keeps pushing her, saying they need money to be married.
When tragedy strikes, Bobbie wants out of the business and tries a regular job. But there's always the lure of her pimp, a man she loves in spite of herself.
This is a pretty wild topic for 1960, and it is well handled. It's a dark and absorbing film as Bobbie works with her doctor to confront her past and figure out why she is so self-destructive.
The film introduces Eileen Fulton as another call girl. She went on to become a huge soap opera star.
Well worth watching. Francis does an excellent job of portraying the vulnerability of Bobbie, as well as her tough outer shell. Kerr plays against type, and Medford is great, particularly in her drunk scene.
The Upturned Glass (1947)
a doctor investigates his lover's death.
A prominent neurosurgeon (James Mason) investigates the death of his lover (Rosamund John) in "The Upturned Glass" from 1947.
Mason plays Dr. Michael Joyce, an unhappily married man. He tells his students the story of a doctor who, after helping a young girl regain her sight, falls in love with the girl's mother, Emma (Rosamund John). Her husband is away; they decide never to see one another again.
Soon after, he learns that Emma has fallen out a window to her death. Michael doesn't believe it's suicide and sets out to find the killer. One way he does this is by getting close to her sister-in-law (Pamela Kellino).
Kellino in reality was Mason's wife, Pamela Mason, who co-wrote an excellent script. It has the perfect British atmosphere - dark, foggy, and mysterious. Kellino's role (no surprise) is an especially good one, that of a mean-spirited, uncaring woman interested only in money. Mason is terrific.
Highly recommended. An absorbing film.
Dark Waters (1944)
sort of Gaslight on the Bayou
A young woman, Leslie (Merle Oberon) is one of only a few survivors in a submarine accident that claimed the lives of her parents. Deeply traumatized, she goes to a relative's plantation to heal. She soon realizes that she's not safe, and turns to the local doctor (Franchot Tone) for help.
Elisha Cook, Jr., Fay Bainter, and Thomas Mitchell are the plantation residents, with Mitchell playing against type - rather than the absent-minded Uncle Billy of "It's a Wonderful Life," or the befuddled Mr. O'Hara, he's a calm conniver.
An exotically beautiful woman of mysterious background, Merle Oberon is excellent as Leslie, a real victim of post-traumatic syndrome if there ever was one. The elegant Tone gives her good support.
Nice, atmospheric film with a tense ending.
Episodic British film about a couple (James and Pamela Mason) who go through three scenarios as possibilities for a film, with them taking the lead in each scenario.
The best one by far was the first, about a woman who sees her neighbor's killer but doesn't tell anyone. Later he shows up to romance her, and she falls for him.
The second one is a period piece about a soldier challenged to a duel, and the third is about a man with the Midas touch who gives it all up to look for what he really wants in life.
All in all, very good.
A Woman's Vengeance (1948)
When Henry Maurier's (Charles Boyer) wife Emily (Rachel Kempson) dies suddenly, suspicion falls on him in "A Woman's Vengeance" from 1948, with a script by Aldous Huxley.
Maurier is an unhappily married womanizer; his wife Emily is a neurotic invalid. Her good friend Janet (Jessica Tandy) visits at Maurier's urging to cheer Emily up after one of their arguments - this one concerning her errant brother (Robert Lester) who wants money.
After lunch with Janet and Emily, Henry leaves to meet his girlfriend (Ann Blyth); Emily retires to her room and dies. The maid (Mildred Natwick) suspects Henry, goes to the police, and the body is exhumed. Emily was poisoned! Henry is arrested, charged with murder, found guilty, and sentenced to death.
Making matters worse for Henry is the fact that his 18-year-old girlfriend Doris is pregnant, and Henry marries her almost immediately after Emily's death.
Very good noir with excellent performances by all involved, particularly Sir Cedric Hardwicke as Emily's doctor. It was amazing to see Jessica Tandy so young -- she's actually 39 here. This film was made probably just prior to her appearing as the original Blanche in "A Streetcar Named Desire" on Broadway. Hers is a showy role, and given her stage experience, she handles it well. Boyer is smooth and debonair, and as his fragile bride, Ann Blyth gives a good performance.
This was a real gem I hadn't heard of -- I loved it.
Death at Love House (1976)
good for a laugh
I'm only giving this 5 stars because of the old-timers who appeared in this cheesy TV movie: Sylvia Sidney, Joan Blondell, John Carradine, and Dorothy Lamour.
Robert Wagner and Kate Jackson play a married couple researching a book on a silent old film star, Lorna Love, and her affair with Wagner's father.
This is a little like The Shining in that the spirit of the house takes over Wagner like five minutes after their arrival.
The actress playing Lorna Love, Marianna Hill, looked like something out of Charlie's Angels, not a '20s film star. After hearing for the entire film how irresistible she was, I still didn't get it.
Campy TV movie.
Honor Among Lovers (1931)
Directed by Dorothy Arzner, Honor Among Lovers concerns a smart and efficient secretary, Julia (Claudette Colbert) to mogul Jeffy Stafford (Fredric March) who is in love with her.
Knowing that she can't fit in with Stafford's wealthy friends, Julia marries Philip Craig (Monroe Owsley), who turns to be a weak loser and winds up putting both of them in a terrible situation.
Colbert is absolutely wonderful in this -- natural, charming, and relaxed. Charlie Ruggles is a riot as a stockbroker, and watch for Ginger Rogers in a small role.
Nothing special except for the performances. And, we get a chance to see Claudette Colbert's right side.
This is part of Noel Coward's Suite in Two Keys and appears on the Noel Coward Collection DVD set.
Paul Scofield, Deborah Kerr, and June Tobin star in this story of a famous writer, Hugo Latymer ((Scofield) who is awaiting a visit from his long-ago lover, Carlotta, played by Kerr. His wife (Tobin) is uneasy about it. However, we learn that her husband says unkind things to her and often isn't nice, and she's learned to live with it. She was once his loyal secretary.
Kerr and Scofield are terrific together. It turns out that Carlotta, an actress, wants to publish their love letters. Then she announces she has a few other letters too.
Hugo suspects she's there to blackmail him, but Carlotta has another agenda.
Now, someone described this as funny. I actually didn't find it so except in the beginning when Scofield is establishing his snobbish character. It's about what we do one another from a lack of compassion, our treatment of people due to our own agendas, repression, and how memory becomes twisted over time.
Sobering and quite good.
a little overdone by today's standards
"Come Into the Garden, Maud" from a BBC production in 1982 is part of the 7-disc Noel Coward Collection. It's a mixed bag. This particular play was interesting because of the casting.
One problem Brits have is that they don't really understand American accents. Not that they can't do them beautifully - but for instance, in a stage production of Death of a Salesman in England, the wife called Willie - VILLY - in an attempt to make them sound like New Yorkers or something. They don't mean to be offensive, they just are.
Same problem here, with Toby Robins playing I guess a rich New Yorker but she comes off very stereotype because of her New York accent which is overdone. At first, Paul Scofield, as her berated husband, seems horribly cast. Later on he is fabulous. I have to blame the direction.
The minute the character of "Maud" said one word I knew it was Geraldine McEwan - unmistakable voice!
The story concerns an unhappy man and his overbearing wife who are traveling in Europe. One night Maud, an acquaintance, comes to visit, and due to a situation at a dinner the wife is throwing, the two are left alone in the hotel room. Wonderful scene. Nice ending.