|Anthony Forwood and Betty Ann Davies|
A fellow who calls himself "The Man in Black" (Valentine Dyall) narrates this humdrum story based on a radio program. Henry Clavering (Sidney James of Heatwave) is a wealthy man in an old mansion with an unloving second wife, Bertha (Betty Ann Davies of Blackout) and stepdaughter, Janice (Sheila Burrell of Paranoiac), both of whom are just waiting for him to die. Henry expires during an experiment with yoga, and along come two visitors: Henry's strange daughter, Joan (Hazel Penwarden); and the handsome gigolo, Victor (Anthony Forwood, Dirk Bogarde's significant other). Now the plot is on to drive Joan mad so that Bertha and Janice can take control of the significant estate. The acting isn't bad -- Forwood, more interesting as a bad guy, makes an impression -- and Sidney James plays the dual role of Henry and his inebriated manservant, Hudson. But this is not memorable, just another stinky British mystery released by the cartload during this period. An early production from Hammer studios. Hazel Penwarden makes little impression in this and retired to television.
Verdict: Not worth the time it takes to tell it. *1/2.