Fine drama thriller about a beautiful socialite woman at the turn of
the 19th century (New York in 1903) the nervously overstrung Allida
(played by Hedy Lamarr) who worries about her elder husband killing
her child, the 5 year old son.
Dr. Huntington Bailey (George Brent, forever immortalized as the killer
in The Spiral Staircase) or Hunt is invited by a friend to come along
to a society gathering at the Bederaux mansion where Nicholas Bederaux,
Nick (Paul Lukas) lives with his young wife Allida.
At first he has no plans to go there, but after looking at Allida's
portrait in a Museum he changes his mind, enchanted by her beauty.
Brent and Hedy
He talks to Allida and finds her to be highly overstrung
and agitated (and with the light spots directed to her eyes she looks
As Hunt is a psychiatrist Nick consults him regarding the mental state
of his wife. She believes that someone is following her and she buys
flowers to be anonymously sent to herself. She also is frightened by
her much older husband. Is she crazy, is someone scheming against her?
Fine acting from Lukas and Brent and Lamarr is OK but
plays another of her Beautiful Bimbo roles. I liked her better when
she was free to act
in roles she wanted to act in, as in the films she co-produced. Hedy
was a highly intelligent woman and surely wanted more interesting roles,
as The Strange Woman and Dishonored Lady (see further down my Film Noir
page). She was a Genius actually and an inventor who came up
with the idea of frequency hopping today used in i.a. satellite technology.
The film takes place in New York 1903 and has quite atmospheric footage
of winter slushy streets.
Aspect ratio 1.37:1 fullscreen original ratio, black & white, english
audio and No Extras