Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Spellbound (1945)

Are you looking for a mystery filled with suspense? Or, are you looking for a sappy romance?  Why not both? This movie is suitable for the whole family!

Dr. Constance Peterson is a gifted psychiatrist who works at a mental hospital.  All the doctors are eagerly awaiting their new director to arrive.  He does, and it turns out to be Dr. Edwardes, played by Gregory Peck.  He is so handsome.  Upon seeing him, Constance drastically changes from a doctor into a drooling high school girl encountering her first crush.  For the most part, I don't blame her, but come on, try to stay a little professional.  It is rather funny to how she changes so much once she sees a hot guy.

Although blinded by love at first, Constance, played by Ingrid Bergman, realizes that something is not quite right with Dr. Edwardes.  I noticed this too, albeit way before she did.  What nails it is she compares her signed copy of his book with a note he had written earlier.  The handwriting doesn't match at all!  Who is this man?

Unfortunately, the other doctors suspect something is wrong as well.  They bring in the police to investigate the disappearance of the real Dr. Edwardes. The imposter flees for his life, and Constance soon follows out of love and a strong determination to cure him.  What ensues is an exciting chase as Constance and her reluctant patient deftly flee police.

Despite not knowing who he really is, Constance vows to protect him at all costs.  It turns out he has amnesia and doesn't actually know who he is; he simply assumed the role of his therapist.  Constance is determined to use her skills to unlock his mind and let him discover who he really is.  But is that dangerous to do when they are no longer in the safety of the hospital?  What if he's a serial killer who murdered Dr. Edwardes and assumed his identity?  Remember this exact thing will happen in Hitchcock's later film, Psycho.

I really enjoyed this movie despite some of the over-acting.  For the most part I like Gregory Peck's performance, much more so than the last two films I reviewed with him in them.  I will give this film a 6/10.

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