Saturday, October 15, 2011

Weekend Cinema Spotlight: The Uninvited

"The Uninvited" (1944)

Did you ever hear someone in the middle of the night but convinced yourself it was the wind or perhaps just a figment of your imagination? Bumps in the night....creaking of the wood....a chill in the air...perhaps your house is haunted? Or perhaps you stayed up late and watching a scary movie and now your mind has run off with you! "The Uninvited" is the perfect ghost story--there is even a slight hint of comedy in this film which is not always an ease task to blend together.
Ray Milland and Ruth Hussey as
Rick and Pamela Fitzgerald

It stars Ray Milland as London composer, Roderick "Rick" Fitzgerald and Ruth Hussey as his sister Pamela. The fall in love with a quaint seaside house and on a whim purchase the property from an aging Commander Beech played by  Donald Crisp (who was a film pioneer-his biography is very interesting to read!).

Sometime later we meet the Commander's twenty year old granddaughter named Stella Meredith played by Gail Russell who was deeply upset by the sale of the property because it belonged to her now deceased parents. Rick and Pamela and ever their housekeeper Lizzie, played by Barbara Everest, found themselves hearing the crying sounds of a woman and feeling cold chills in the art gallery. Dispite the Commander's disapproval, Stella befriends the Fitzgeralds and when she dines in their home she encounters a spirit that she associates with her mother.

The stunning Gail Russell

From that event on the mystery of who is haunting Windward House leaves Rick, Pamela, Stella, and even the town doctor played by Alan Napier (who plays Alfred Pennyworth in the Batman tv series) to investigate. The eventually find out that Stella's father has an affair with a spanish gypsy named Carmel. She was supposedly in their service and the Meredith's brought her to Paris to have a better life. And then there is Miss Holloway played by Cornelia Otis Skinner, who was Mary Meredith's confidant and friend (and obessed with her similarily to Mrs. Danvers from "Rebecca"). Her role in this mystery is a lot bigger than anyone imagined.

What we find out later is that....really I never know if I should tell the whole story because then you might not feel inspired to watch the film one day to find out. So for the love of classic film and all its beauty and charm, I will leave it a mystery for you to solve.

The Trailer for "The Uninvited" (1944)

I must say I was pleasantly surprised that in one of the final scenes of the film I actually got spooked-that was cool! This film left me giggling, scared, and inturiged more and more! I see now why this film has such great reviews and it lives on as one of the best ghost stories in classic film today.


1 comment:

  1. I've never seen this film! But now I need to find it! Thanks for sharing xoxo


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