September is here already and the days are getting shorter. To be honest I cant wait for cooler weather and I don't care much about the evenings getting shorter in daylight but I don't like getting up in the morning when it is still dark. Oh well, I wouldn't trade where I live...scratch that, yes, if I could live in an Alpine village, I would go there but other than that, I love Canada. This week is much easier because it is all about domestic thrillers and, no, I am not talking about toothless Bertha and her hubby/cousin Bubba belching beer, eating roadkill a la carte shooting off one of their 6 guns, misquoting the bible and thinking that hoarders was how to style their shack, but about non-marital bliss. Wandering Through The Shelves picked a good one for this week(well, almost always, they are good picks) I don't think I can keep it to 3 so here are my chosen not so few.
A classic Alfred Hitchcock film starring Joan Fontaine as the suspicious wife and Cary Grant as the, possibly, murderous husband. Young, rich Joan meets this man, Cary, who sweeps her off her feet and they marry and move into a home that has "rich" written all over it. Cary is always into some scheme or another and has a good friend, played by the likeable Nigel Bruce(of Dr. Watson fame from Sherlock Holmes movies of the same time period) who is with him on his schemes. Soon Joan begins to suspect all is not what it seems with her dashing husband and when she becomes ill and he brings her some milk, she is not sure how to get around to not drinking it. This is quite the uneasy film because you don't know what is true and what isn't. I love how Hitchcock made the milk light up to make it look more ominous. It is worth taking a look at this gem.
2. LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN-1945
I did speak about this film quite a while ago but it is worth a revisit. Cornel Wilde plays a writer who falls for the mysterious but very beautiful Ellen, played by the very beautiful Gene Tierney. She has a mom and sister but Ellen was always daddy's girl, where nobody could come between them. Well, the hapless writer marries Ellen who loves him to the exclusion of everyone. She can't abide anyone sharing his love with someone else so his much younger brother, who is disabled, must be dealt with. When Ellen finds out she is pregnant and realizes the baby will take attention away from her, she will not abide this. The writer soon finds out he is not married to a hapless waif. This is an excellent film that makes you shudder at the depths this girl will go to to keep attention on her. Gene Tierney gave one of her best performances in this role and it is worth watching.
3. DIAL M FOR MURDER-1954
Grace Kelly, in her first Hitchcock film, plays the wife of a tennis player, played by Ray Milland. Good ole Ray has decided to want out of his marriage and arranges for her to be killed but he doesn't think that his wife is good with scissors. Grace is often called the ideal Hitchcock lady and he loved working with her and vice versa. This is actually a film done in 3D and you can see where some of the images were to be put to this effect but it does not distract from the story. Good ole Grace, who loved loving her leading men had quite the affair with Ray Milland to the point where Milland's wife used Grace's name with the lawyers but, the affair cooled and Milland went back to his wife.
4. BLACK WIDOW-1987
This is a gem if you can find it because it is a real cat and mouse game with the women playing the strong parts and the men the hapless victims. We meet Theresa Russell(where is she now??) as Catherine newly married to an older, rich man(Dennis Hopper) who dies and not by accident. We soon realize that Catherine is a killer of men after she marries them for their money. An FBI agent, played by Debra Winger, knows this women will kill again and goes on the hunt for her and tries to outsmart this sexy evil bitch. This is a real cat and mouse game with the women in power, rare to find in film.
5. DOUBLE JEOPARDY-1999
Ashley Judd is happily married to a wealthy man and has a young son with him. One eve, they take out their small boat even though he does not know how to handle the boat but believes in his wife. After a night of passion(or 10 minutes), she falls into a deep sleep and when she wakes up she finds blood everywhere. She is promptly arrested, tried and found guilty in the death of her husband. In prison, scared, she soon starts to make friends with the other women and one day, when she calls her best friend so she can speak to her son, she hears her her son call out, "Daddy!" Can we say PISSED! She finds out she can't be charged twice for the murder of her husband since he is, supposedly, dead. She gets out after 6 years for good behaviour and meets her parole officer, played by Tommy Lee Jones. Little does he know she is on a mission to find her husband so, when she breaks her parole, Tommy is hot on her trail. This is quite a fun flick with one strong woman in Ashley Judd and Bruce Greenwood, who is such a good actor, plays her slimy husband.
I could have written more but there are my 5. Which would you choose?