Friday, October 23, 2015

Wives Under Suspicion (1938)

     Wives Under Suspicion (1938) [D:James Whale. Warren William, Gail Patrick, Lilian Yarbo]
     A workaholic District Attorney goes after the death penalty for a man who killed his wife in a fit of passionate jealousy and now suffers from extreme remorse and grief. Influenced by the man’s confession, he develops a jealous suspicion of his own wife, and comes close to duplicating the crime. This makes him reconsider the prosecution, and he asks that the charge be reduced to manslaughter. Fadeout on a clinch as the hero and his wife set out on a second honeymoon.
     Semi-competent programme-filler, what used to be called a women’s picture, with its hero realising how much he loves his wife. One cliche and stereotype after another, with a seriously underdeveloped depiction of the marriage, which is central to the movie. Of historical interest to students of popular culture with its do-nothing wife, its clamourous reporters, use of headline montages to tell the story of the trial, etc. Oh, the key scene, in which the hero thinks he sees his wife having an affair, turns out to be something completely different. *½

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