Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


BLINDFOLD (1965). Director: Philip Dunne.

Psychiatrist Dr. Bartholomew Snow (Rock Hudson) is drafted by General Prat (Jack Warden) to treat an old patient of his, a scientist named Vincenti (Alejandro Rey). Snow is blindfolded and flown to a secret location where the paranoid Vincenti is being held. But is General Prat really who he says he is, and is stuttering patient Fitzpatrick (Guy Stockwell) somehow involved as well? When Snow realizes something's rotten in Denmark, he and Vincenti's sister Vicky (Claudia Cardinale) have to try and retrace Snow's steps while blindfolded and find her brother. Based on a novel by Lucille Fletcher, Blindfold has a good story, but at times the [admittedly often funny] comedy relief simply overwhelms the suspense and dissipates the tension, with the result that the movie wears out its welcome long before it's over. Climactic scenes with alligators, explosions and bullets flying everywhere are busy but handled without any directorial aplomb. Hitchcock probably could have done a lot with this, but Dunne? Cardinale is cute and perky; Hudson more than acceptable in the lead although no Cary Grant. As Snow's secretary Anne Seymour doesn't have enough oomph [a la Eve Arden]. Seymour appeared on The Honeymooners more than once and had a long, long list of credits. Guy Stockwell was the older brother of Dean Stockwell. Jack Warden comes off best as Prat.Dunne also directed The View from Pompey's Head and wrote the screenplay for The Ghost and Mrs. Muir.

Verdict: Okay, if you're not expecting another North By Northwest. **1/2.


Colin said...

I must admit I was a bit disappointed by this when I saw it. I thought the comedy was overplayed and sat uneasily with the suspense.
I have to say it is a great looking movie though.

William said...

I agree, I have a widescreen DVD and it looked wonderful. If only it had been a better movie!

Thanks for your comment, Colin.