Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
On her way home from choir practice, a teenage girl (Carroll Baker) is dragged into the bushes and raped. Thus begins her psychological breakdown and withdrawal. She leaves home without telling her mother (Mildred Dunnock) and takes a job at a 5&10 store while living in a seedy one room apartment. That's the first act. The second act begins when after a failed suicide attempt, an emotionally disturbed garage mechanic (Ralph Meeker) takes her home and keeps her a prisoner (not unlike THE COLLECTOR). This is one freaky movie! Directed by Jack Garfein whose only other feature film was the equally weird THE STRANGE ONE, one is never quite sure what Garfein (who co-wrote the screenplay with Alex Karmel based on Karmel's novel MARY ANN) is trying to say. Are we supposed to buy that idea that two unhealthy lost souls, both deeply in need of therapy, can heal each other through love? The first portion of the film is very cinematic what with Saul Bass's wonderful main title and Aaron Copland's kinetic underscore and Eugen Schufftan's excellent lensing of the New York backdrop. But the second half is like watching a stage play as the action never leaves Meeker's one room apartment. I'm not sure how I feel about it but the acting is excellent and it's never boring, I'll give you that. With Doris Roberts, Jean Stapleton, Clifton James and Martin Kosleck.