Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
USA, 1944. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Screenplay by John Van Druten, Walter Reisch, John L. Balderston, based on the play Angel Street by Patrick Hamilton. Cinematography by Joseph Ruttenberg. Produced by Arthur Hornblow Jr.. Music by Bronislau Kaper. Production Design by Cedric Gibbons. Costume Design by Irene. Film Editing by Ralph E. Winters. Academy Awards 1944. Cannes Film Festival 1946. Golden Globe Awards 1944.
Ingrid Bergman won her first of three Academy Awards for this superficial Victorian mystery about an innocent woman whose manipulative husband (Charles Boyer) is trying to convince her that she is insane in order to push her towards suicide. She comes very close to believing it, but what woman hasn’t nearly gone insane because she had a husband? A British version of the same story was made a few years earlier, but MGM ordered all the prints destroyed in order that their version would be the more successful (particularly since those who had seen the original immediately recognized its superiority). Look for a sharp debut by a very young Angela Lansbury, who had to wait for her eighteenth birthday before she could film the scene in which she smokes.