- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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Significance of "Woman in White"
It might enhance one's enjoyment of the film to realize that the novel by Wilkie Collins on which it is based is considered to be the first modern mystery novel in the English language. Although the book itself has more plot twists and turns and character development than any film could ever have time to present (remember that in the mid to late 19th century many books were serialized, leading to their considerable lengths), this Greenstreet/Parker version comes closest to all the versions I have seen of conveying the menace and madness that are the essence of the story. Bravo!
TWIW Review--Round Three
- Beverly Anne
Being that this is the 3rd time I've submitted the review on this unsung gem, maybe someone is out doing Christmas shopping or something. An awesome first-class cast, before they were even considered top-tier, and an impressive overall production, makes this Victorian eclectic film not to be missed. When I first heard a sampling of Max Stein's rousing score at the TCM site, I was hooked: I just knew I had to order this DVD mini-masterpiece.Almost brilliant in direction, Peter Godfrey of "A Christmas In Connecticut" fame, masterfully plays his players as a pieces on a chess board. Leading the cast is a capable, but not too impressive Alexis Smith, a tepid, but nevertheless heroic Gig Young, gloriously fiendish Sydney Greenstreet and sneaky, despicable John Emery, Greenstreet's partner in crime. John Abbott, I believe, took the proverbial cake and cherry on top with it and should have gotten an Oscar-nod as a supporting actor. With Agnes Moorehead giving an exceptional performance as well, it couldn't get any better. Almost...A young, beautiful, Warner Brothers starlet, that still had not reached major stardom in Hollywood, virtually commanded attention throughout the entire film. I speak of the ravishing beautiful, extraordinarily gifted actress, Eleanor Parker. I consider her acting prowness of the first order and have even uploaded a new website dedicated to her work in filmdom. It's at Eleanorforever.com Playing a dual role as the ethereal, slightly demented, spooky Anne Catherick, and her magnificently gorgeous look-alike rich cousin, Laura Fairlie, we have one of the first cases of identity theft in a film as portrayed by Eleanor Parker.Eloquent, well-paced and with typical black and white sets giving it a slight noir look, I had to watch it over again just to understand the intricacies of the balletic plot and subplots. Beware though. It is well worth the time spent in discovering this Victorian classic--ala Hollywood 1948
woman in white
- kevin sellers
Murder mysteries don't come duller than this overly complicated, talky, actionless ode to somnolence. Director Peter Godfrey easily makes two hours feel like three with his oh so deliberate pacing that features endless scenes of meandering, melodramatic conversation and bland performances from the "heroes" in the cast, especially the two lovely female holes in the screen called Eleanor and Alexis. Hell, Godfrey even manages to make the wonderful Gig Young seem bland. About the only reasons to watch the damn thing are good villainous turns by the always reliably malevolent Sydney Greenstreet and an actor I've never seen before named John Abbott who manages to carve an unforgettable vignette of an obnoxious hypochondriac. And the dreamy, haunted, moody score by Max Steiner is also worth hearing.So let's give it a C 'stead of a D for Syd, John and Max.
The Woman in White
- Susanne Cavendish
A wonderful film, suspenseful and well-acted. I was pleasantly surprised to see Gig Young, in his 30's then and how well he played the part of Hartright. Eleanor Parker and Alexis Smith, beautiful, as always, made the film seem real and credible in a kind of 19th century way. Greenstreet, usually the villain, did not let me down, his roles always a bit smoky behind mirrored deviousness which always seem to extend to paramours or fellow criminal types. I give the movie a well-deserved, five stars! Yes, on DVD, would be nice!
Releasing this movie on DVD would be a gift to those appreciating this novel and a Our time's tribute to W Collins and all involved in the production of the movie... the novel was written about 90 years before it was made into a film, releasing it on DVD 60 years later would support this continuum and serve popularization of literary and cinematographic heritage.
Needs a DVD Release at the Very Least
- me now
Here is a hard to catch film, but one that fills in nicely with some other gothic films of its era. A pretty talkative version of the classic novel, this film needs a DVD release.
Waiting for the DVD
- Zeke Dutkiewicz
Hopefully Warner Bros will release The Woman in White 1948, on DVD in the near future. Love this movie.
***** PLEASE RELEASE THIS ON DVD*****
This is such a great film! Please release it on DVD!!!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe a Greenstreet collection or Gothic mystery collection!
The Movie in Mediocrity
I was really excited to be able to watch this film. I really like Alexis Smith and Eleanor Parker and this seemed just like my kind of movie. I have to admit though at some point I found myself getting restless. I made myself sit and watch but it kept increasing to the point I wanted to just read the synopsis to find out what happened. I can't put my finger on what exactly was wrong with it ( maybe it was just me ). I thought it was acted well enough, the story seemed interesting, but for whatever reason it just seemed ho-hum. There was some suspense in wondering what was really going on, just not enough to take it to the next level.
A Melodramatic Classic
This production of 'Woman in White' has good material and fine performers. It is an interwoven mystery that is somewhat slow moving and melodramatically presented. That's too bad. It could have been much more effectively done under the direction of Alfred Hitchcock.
- Mr Greenstreet
A lost classic
- Jack Frymire
Few Hollywood movies in the Gothic genre rival this one--its elegant, literate writing; fluid, graceful direction (by the vastly underrated Peter Godfrey); flawless casting, and moody atmosphere. Sydney Greenstreet is at his charming but menacing best; Gig Young and Alexis Smith are models of romantic decorum. But the title role (though not the lead) is in the hands of one of Hollywood's most gifted, but underrated and frequently miscast actresses: Eleanor Parker. She had an incomparable flair for period drama--unblemished beauty, dulcet voice, impeccable diction, balletic grace, big-time glamor--but she was almost always just a touch too classy for her surroundings, squandered in unworthy vehicles. Her comic soubrette performance in "Scaramouche" is peerless. Then there's this gem, one of the few movies that show her to advantage. It's maddening that Turner Classic Movies continues to withhold it. What's the story?
The Woman in White (1948)
- James Higgins
What a peculiar film. It's a bit of a fantasy mystery, with some romance and drama thrown in, as well as spme thriller elements. The plot is very complex, with numerous subplots. Eleanor Parker plays an ethereal character and is the woman in white of the title. Gig Young plays an artist who on various occasions comes across the title character. He is hired to tutor a young woman at an eerie country estate, which has a strange array of residents. There are hidden secrets in the house....good costumes, the acting is a bit stagy and heavy. Fine score. A bit too talking and slow moving.
- Jarrod McDonald
I know there are people who really enjoy this classic version, and I like it too, but I felt that this could've been an even better film. It is as if the picture is filled with second-rate A-listers. I think it could've been a real masterpiece if it had been cast as follows: Joan Fontaine as Laura/Anne; Olivia DeHavilland as Marion; and Robert Taylor as Walter. As it is, we have Eleanor Parker in the dual role, and she isn't terrible (I prefer her social realism dramas of the 50s & 60s, such as Caged and Home from the Hill). We also have Alexis Smith in the role of Marion, and I think she's better in frothy comedies and musicals or westerns. Then, there's Gig Young as the tutor who seems to be very wooden with his performance (he is much more relaxed playing off Errol Flynn and Ida Lupino in Escape Me Never). But what I do think is correct in this film's casting are the supporting roles. Sydney Greenstreet is perfectly creepy as the count; and Agnes Moorhead steals the show as his tragic wife, the countess. In fact, aside from her bit part in Citizen Kane and an Oscar-nominated role in Mrs. Parkington, I think this is probably Aggie's greatest performance in a feature film. The actor who plays the nervous uncle is also very good and gives the film moments of delicious camp. The difference with these types of supporting players is that they are not looking to be the stars of a picture, but at the same time, they are not turning in a hollow performance. Especially Moorhead who seems to really prepare for her roles and brings a level of dignity and deep meaning to a film, even in a limited number of scenes (Jane Eyre is another example of her ability in a stand-out minor role.)
Play this again!
This movie has it all - great ambience, romance, suspense and a great cast. Immediately one feels that something is going to happen to the artist who is making his way to his new employer's home. Because he missed his connection, the employer's carriage is no longer there and though it is dark the artist decides to make the journey on foot with a local's directions. He encounters the mysterious woman in white before reaching the house and then the suspense starts! This one has to be shown again.
A great movie
I once saw an English version (more modern) of this movie that was 5 hours longs. I think this one was much better. I would like to see it again. It kept me interested and intrigued. It's a lost gem. I didn't even know the version that I saw was a re-make. I wish I could purchase this movie. Thank you TCM for showing it.
Finally back on!
- Vintage Girl
TCM ran this movie about 4 or 5 year's ago and hasn't been on since! Awesome cast, Sydney Greenstreet is sooo creepy! Eleanor Parker enchanting!Based on Wilkie Collin's story (a contempory) of Charles Dickens. Haunting score, eerie backdrop, wonderful and mysterious. Great film to watch on a cold rainy night with a cup of tea or glass of sherry! I'm so glad it's on again, I wish they would release this on DVD. THANKS FOR SHOWING IT AGAIN!
- Tony Moses
Remember seeing this movie over 20years ago and what a great mystery great cast need to be shown.