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

Thursday, November 27, 2014


THE FAKE (1953). Director: Godfrey Grayson.

Paul Mitchell (Dennis O'Keefe of Weekend for Three) is investigating the theft of a couple of da Vinci paintings when he arrives at the Tate gallery in London. Once there, he suspects that the da Vinci in their collection is a fake. One of the main suspects for the forgery is an unsuccessful painter named Henry Mason (John Laurie of Island of Desire), whose daughter, Mary (Colleen Gray of The Phantom Planet), works at the gallery and is appalled and angered by Mitchell's suspicions, which hardly helps him make time with her. Others mixed up in the case include Smith (Guy Middleton), Peter Randall (Gerald Case), and Sir Richard Aldingham (Hugh Williams). Will Mitchell survive this investigation as the forger gets increasingly desperate to avoid capture? The only really interesting thing about this by-the-numbers movie with its TV-like production is that the score is based on Mussorgsky's "Pictures from an Exhibition." The acting is decent.

Verdict: Not quite a fake movie, but close. **.

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