Thursday, November 06, 2008

The Wicked Lady

Paholaisnainen / Maantierosvojen kuningatar / Svarta damen / Stråtrövarnas drottning. GB 1945. PC: Gainsborough. D: Leslie Arliss. SC: Leslie Arliss, Aimee Stuart, Gordon Glennon - based on the novel The Life and Death of the Wicked Lady Skelton (1943) by Magdalen King-Hall. DP: Jack Cox. AD: John Bryan. ED: Terence Fisher. CAST: Margaret Lockwood (Barbara Skelton), James Mason (Captain Jerry Jackson), Patricia Roc (Caroline), Griffith Jones (Sir Ralph Skelton, magistrate), Michael Rennie (Kit), Enid Stamp-Taylor (Lady Henrietta Kingsclere). 104 min. A Park Circus print viewed at Cinema Orion, Helsinki, 5 Nov 2008. - A serviceable print. - Energetic entertainment from a female viewpoint. This is libido speak, cinema of transgression in the entertainment sphere. We are asked to identify with the selfish woman, Lady Skelton (Margaret Lockwood), who thinks nothing of breaking her best woman friend's betrothal, seducing her fiancé, marrying for money, already in the wedding party lusting for another man, losing her irreplaceable diadem in a play of the cards, becoming a highwaywoman to retrieve the diadem, starting a wild affair with the real highwayman, Captain Jackson (James Mason), and complaining about her husband, the magistrate Ralph Skelton, devoting himself to work, work work... of containing rampant crime! - Sharp dialogue, knowing looks, double entendres, bulging half-naked bosoms, pulp narrative. The fun of audacity, of doing the wrong thing. - Hitchcock's cameraman Jack Cox in good form. The future Hammer director Terence Fisher as editor. - I watched 40 min.

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