Second Woman

The Second Woman

Director: James Kern, Robert Young, Betsy Drake, Florence Bates

Cast: James Kern, Robert Young, Betsy Drake, Florence Bates

     
 

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In the vein of Spellbound and Rebecca comes this 1951 film noir from director James V. Kern. Robert Young stars as Jeff Cohalan, a successful architect who is tormented by the fact that his fiancée was killed in a mysterious car accident on the night before their wedding. Blaming himself for her death, Colahan spends his time alone, lamenting in the

Overview

In the vein of Spellbound and Rebecca comes this 1951 film noir from director James V. Kern. Robert Young stars as Jeff Cohalan, a successful architect who is tormented by the fact that his fiancée was killed in a mysterious car accident on the night before their wedding. Blaming himself for her death, Colahan spends his time alone, lamenting in the cliff-top home he'd designed for his bride-to-be. To make matters worse, ever since the accident, Colahan seems to be followed by bad luck. His horse and dog turn up dead without explanation, leading him to wonder if he has been cursed. Enter Ellen Foster (Betsy Drake), an independent and intelligent insurance investigator who just might be able to help Colahan figure out who or what's behind all of his misfortune.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
The Second Woman is an intriguing if frustrating little thriller -- frustrating because it verges on being very good but settles for being merely OK. Part of the problem is that Woman combines elements of various styles -- film noir, psychological drama, mystery, thriller, romance -- but doesn't meld them into a satisfying whole. Some may also have a problem with Robert Young's extremely subdued performance as Jeff Cohalan. While Young is actually doing some very careful, nuanced work, the manner in which he underplays -- which is exactly what is demanded by the screenplay -- may preclude sufficient involvement on the part of the viewer. As Ellen Foster, Betsy Drake gamely tries to make up for this, but occasionally comes across as pushing too hard. James Kern should be lauded for his attempts to create mood and atmosphere, and for his considerable success in this area, but he should also be criticized for letting the pace flag in spots and for not finding a consistent tone for the piece. The story is, fortunately, rather fascinating and keeps the audience quite involved, even when the dialogue is a bit simplistic. All in all, The Second Woman is a good attempt that is worth watching, even if it falls short of reaching its goals.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/09/2015
UPC:
0644827297825
Original Release:
1951
Source:
Nostalgia Family
Sales rank:
83,898

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Robert Young Jeff Cohalan
Betsy Drake Ellen Foster
Florence Bates Amelia Foster
Morris Carnovsky Dr. Hartley
Henry O'Neill Ben Sheppard
Jean Rogers Dodo Ferris
Raymond Largay Maj. Badger
Shirley Ballard Vivian Sheppard
Vicki Raaf Secretary
Jason Robards Stacy Rogers
Steven Geray Balthazar Jones
Jimmy Dodd Mr. Nelson
Smoki Whitfield Porter
Cliff Clark Police Sergeant
John Sutton Keith Ferris
John Gallaudet Mac

Technical Credits
James Kern Director
Mort Briskin Producer,Screenwriter
Mac Dalgleish Sound/Sound Designer
Maria P. Donovan Costumes/Costume Designer
Nathaniel W. Finston Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision
Boris Leven Production Designer
Jacque Mapes Set Decoration/Design
Hal Mohr Cinematographer
Joseph H. Nadel Associate Producer
Joseph Nusbaum Musical Direction/Supervision
Harry M. Popkin Executive Producer
Robert Smith Producer,Screenwriter
Maurie M. Suess Asst. Director
Walter Thompson Editor
Henry Vilardo Makeup
Ben Winkler Sound/Sound Designer

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