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: The Unfaithful (1947) Woman's Noir  ( 2431 )
cigar joe
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« : September 21, 2016, 03:52:45 AM »

Directed by Vincent Sherman, starring Ann Sheridan (They Drive by Night (1940), Nora Prentiss (1947), Woman on the Run (1950)), Lew Ayres (The Dark Mirror (1946), The Capture (1950), No Escape (1953)), Zachary Scott (twelve classic Noir), Eve Arden (Mildred Pierce (1945), The Arnelo Affair (1947), Whiplash (1948)), Jerome Cowan (The Maltese Falcon (1941), Moontide (1942), Street of Chance (1942), Deadline at Dawn (1946), Night Has a Thousand Eyes (1948), Scene of the Crime (1949)), Steven Geray (seven classic Noir), John Hoyt (six classic film noir), Douglas Kennedy, and Marta Mitrovich. Music by Max Steiner and Cinematography by Ernest Haller. There are a few nice sequences that feature Bunker Hill. The film was derived from the 1927 play The Letter by W. Somerset Maugham, which also was the genesis of the 1940n Bette Davis film The Letter. The Unfaithful falls into the category of Noir labeled woman's noir.

Roger (Kennedy) rt.  Chris (Sheridan) center Paula (Arden) lt.

Chris attacked

The tale begins when Chris Hunter (Sheridan) stabs a man in her home late one evening while her husband Bob (Scott) is out of town on business. The dead man's name is Tanner and she claims to the police that she doesn't know him.

A blackmailer Martin Barrow (Geray) contacts Chris's lawyer  Larry Hannaford (Ayers)  and tells him to come to his antique shop where he displays a bust of Chris Hunter's head signed by Tanner. He offers to sell it for $10,000. Hannaford, who is also Chris's good friend, knows that Chris is lying about not knowing the man she killed, and that this if it comes out will go bad for her with contradicting story she told the police detective (Hoyt).

Mrs. Tanner (Mitrovich) and Barrow (Geray)

Chris goes to see Barrow but he has already double-crossed her and Larry by taking the artwork to Tanner's wife (Mitrovich). She now knows that Chris had an affair with her husband. She and Barrow now put the touch on Bob Hunter thinking he'll want to keep the info out of the papers. Unknown to Bob and Barrows the police have the Elmar Hotel where Mrs. Tanner lives staked out. Bob goes home to Chris and demands a divorce after Chris admits having an affair with Tanner while her husband was away during the war.

Chris is charged with murder by the DA and tried. The last quarter of the film is Hannaford trying to persuade the jury that even though Chris was guilty of adultery, she did not murder Tanner but stabbed him in self-defense. Tanner was known as a drunk who lost control when he was in his cups. The final preachy segment has Hannaford doing a monologue trying to convince Bob and Chris to at least consider saving their marriage rather than get a divorce.


Scott plays the cuckold husband to a T, Ayers is like I said a bit preachy in this. Sheridan is fine and the rest of the cast is adequet, the main reason for me to watch is for the Angels Flight and Bunker Hill segments. 6/10

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dave jenkins
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« #1 : September 21, 2016, 07:16:33 AM »

The film was derived from the 1927 play The Letter by W. Somerset Maugham, which also was the genesis of the 1940n Bette Davis film The Letter.
There's also a 1929 version of The Letter (with Jeanne Eagels) and a 1982 TV version with Lee Remick. I haven't seen either.

Good job, CJ.

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