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

Thursday, February 27, 2014


Linda Darnell and Rex Harrison
UNFAITHFULLY YOURS (1948). Written, produced and directed by Preston Sturges.

Sir Alfred De Carter (Rex Harrison of Blithe Spirit) is a world-famous conductor married to a younger woman, Daphne (Linda Darnell). Through the manipulations of his unpleasant brother-in-law (Rudy Vallee of My Dear Secretary), Alfred becomes convinced that Daphne is carrying on with his secretary, Tony (Kurt Kreuger). As he conducts classical and operatic pieces by Rossini, Tchaikovsky, and Wagner, he imagines different ways in which he can get even with the two, then finally tries to hatch one of the plots, which doesn't work out as well as it does in his fantasy. The "hero" in this actually contrives to murder his wife, but a bigger problem is the classical music background is totally at odds with what's happening on screen, which in turn has little to do with the music. The whole thing just doesn't work, and worse, is rather boring for long stretches. The cast -- including Barbara Lawrence of The Star as Vallee's sneering, belittling wife -- is quite good, but not enough to save the movie.

Verdict: Go to the opera instead. **.

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