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Friday, May 31, 2013

Madonna Of The Seven Moons (1945)

After being traumatized due to being raped as a convent schoolgirl, a woman (Phyllis Calvert) leads a proper sheltered life as a respectable wife and mother except for a period in her life when she disappeared and which she has no recollection of. When her daughter (Patricia Roc) returns home after being away to school for five years, it triggers a breakdown and she disappears .... again. This feverish rather ludicrous Gainsborough melodrama has to be seen to be believed. It's so off the charts crazy that it makes for a grand entertainment. Could 1945 audiences really have taken this cup of spiked punch so seriously? Whatever, it was a great hit and one can see why, all that's missing is the garish Technicolor. The film's portrayal of gypsies (all of them lying thieves and rotten to the core) is ethnically questionable and the casting of the stalwart Stewart Granger as a hot blooded wild gypsy lover is loopy but Calvert manages to summon up a semblance of passion. Directed by Arthur Crabtree (HORRORS OF THE BLACK MUSEUM). With Peter Glenville (who would later become better known as a director for films like BECKET), Jean Kent and Helen Haye.

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