A Woman's Vengeance


Drama / Film-Noir / Mystery

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN


Top cast

Cedric Hardwicke Photo
Cedric Hardwicke as Dr. James Libbard
Jessica Tandy Photo
Jessica Tandy as Janet Spence
Mari Aldon Photo
Mari Aldon as Girl
Ann Blyth Photo
Ann Blyth as Doris Mead
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
880.97 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 35 min
P/S ...
1.6 GB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 35 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by boblipton7 / 10

Great Cast, Great Dialogue, Great First Half

Rachel Kempson is the bedridden, whining wife of rich Charles Boyer. She complains about everything and everyone, and only Mildred Natwick, as her man-hating nurse, seems to sympathize with her. Boyer does what he can in a weary, dutiful manner, but takes pleasure in flirting with next-door neighbor Jessica Tandy on the subject of modern art. He's also got Ann Blyth as an 18-year-old mistress. Then Kempson dies, Boyer marries his pregnant mistress almost immediately, and Miss Natwick insists on an autopsy. It turns out the dead woman was poisoned, and Boyer is on trial for murder.

I thought the first half of this movie was fabulous, with a cast that played it to the hilt, particularly Mildred Natwick, so vilely self-righteous. The problem for me lay in the second half, because I picked out the murderer as soon as the death scene was described, and Hardwicke's pick-pick-picking at the scabs of the other character's souls, beautifully written by Aldous Huxley, and performed though it was, seemed to me long-winded.

That's the problem when you figure out a mystery well before the end, motive, method and opportunity; you spend the time wondering how everyone in the movie (or book) can be so blind. So I spent my time reworking it as a stage play, wondering about the bare minimum of sets. I made it four.

Reviewed by wisewebwoman8 / 10

One of Jessica Tandy's best!

This movie provides some interesting character studies by Aldous Huxley. Charles Boyer portrays Henry, a not very likeable husband to an invalid wife,Emily (Rachel Kempson). He has a very young mistress on the side, Doris, played by Ann Blythe. On the sidelines stands Janet, played by Jessica Tandy, whom Henry flirts with as a matter of course, but she takes it all very seriously and is in love with him. When Emily is murdered, Henry is arrested and sentenced to death by hanging. The second half of the movie deals with the secrets underlying Emily's death. Very well done with one flaw. Ann Blythe seems to start out in the movie as a selfish, manipulative young mistress and her transformation to a caring wife seems a bit of a stretch. Mildred Natwick is superb as a nosy nurse as is Cedric Hardwicke as a doctor who just about effortlessly steals every scene he is in. A true pro. 8 out of 10.

Reviewed by bmacv8 / 10

Splendid cast does justice to Aldous Huxley's tale of country-house frustration and murder

Ah, English country life - all revenge killings and red-currant fool. That's the fate that conveniently befalls Rachel Kempson, the irritating invalid spouse to squire Charles Boyer. It's convenient for him, because the lid's just been torn off his affair with his teen-aged mistress (Ann Blythe),with whom he was whiling away the evening as the bell tolled for his lawfully wedded wife.

At first, the demise of that royal pain causes a general sigh of relief. It leaves Boyer free to marry Blythe, which he does; it also left him free, in the view of neighbor and intimate family friend Jessica Tandy, to marry her, which he did not. When a trouble-making nurse (Mildred Natwick),outraged by Boyer's extramarital carryings-on, goes to the police, an autopsy proves her suspicions correct: The sudden death, at first though to have a heart attack brought on by those beastly berries, turns out to be poisoning by arsenic found in weed killer. Inquest, trial and death sentence all go badly for Boyer, who awaits the scaffold claiming his innocence.

It sounds like an Agatha Christie country-house mystery - genteel homicide between rubbers of Bridge - but it's a bit more than that. Aldous Huxley wrote the script, from his story The Gioconda Smile, and he's less interested in the logistics of murder than its psychology. Today, he's remembered chiefly as author of Brave New World and as an apostle of LSD. But he was one of the more thoughtful and inquisitive popular novelists of his time, holding the sort of position Gore Vidal does today, and, like Vidal, found Southern California and The Industry congenial for living and working. He was lucky to get a director (Zoltan Korda) and a cast this good.

Boyer breaks free from the debonair malevolence that, following the success of Gaslight, so often shackled him, and Blythe starts out recycling her Veda Pierce but finally realizes that this is a new role. Tandy, fresh from creating Blanche DuBois on Broadway, tackles her part - a lovesick spinster of 35 - cautiously at first, then deepens and underscores what turns out to be the movie's central role. There's a strikingly composed scene in which her face is severely framed in a high aperture overlooking Boyer's death cell when she unleashes her pent-up frustration, and Tandy does it full justice. Acting honors, however, go to Cedric Hardwicke, family physician turned psychoanalyst and father-confessor, who steals every scene simply by off-handedly underplaying.

A Woman's Vengance is a Hollywood product so skillfully put together that its multi-national cast needs no cumbersome explication. It's literate, verging on the sedate, keeping attention though subtle shifts rather than clamorous developments. In its sense of the malice festering under a cultivated facade of manners, A Woman's Vengeance calls to mind another country-house movie of the same year, Sign of the Ram.

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