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

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

THREE BAD SISTERS


THREE BAD SISTERS (1956). Director: Gilbert Kay.

A millionaire goes berserk during a plane trip and causes a crash in which he’s killed. His sister blames the pilot, a handsome lug named Jim (John Bromfield) who becomes involved with the dead man’s three daughters. Lorna (Sara Shane) actually isn’t so bad, although even she doesn’t seem so put out by her father’s demise. Vicki (Marla English) is the sexy youngster who comes afoul of her beautiful older sister Valerie (the truly beauteous Kathleen Hughes), as the two have a really nifty, rather sadistic "cat fight" which leads to tragedy. Brett Halsey appears briefly as one of Vicki’s cast-off boyfriends, and Madge Kennedy is fun as the sisters’ gun-totin’ Aunt Martha, who tries to shoot Jim. A hilarious moment occurs afterward when Lorna says to Jim as they prepare to go back into the mansion where Aunt Martha lives: "If Aunt Martha isn’t cordial, please overlook it." Cordial? In the previous scene she tried to murder the guy (nobody calls the police and has her arrested for this, even though it’s clearly a case of attempted homicide)! Okay, this is a dumb, badly acted, silly movie, but it holds the attention and Gerald Drayson Adams’ script has some interesting facets, such as the business with the sisters daring each other to dive off a cliff at just the right second when the tide comes in and the water is deep enough to survive. From Bel-Air, which was not exactly MGM.
Verdict: Amusing trash. **1/2.

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