The Queen Of Spades

  • 1949
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama

Bizarre and atmospheric supernatural drama based on a classic short story by Russian poet Aleksander Pushkin. Walbrook is a dashing but impoverished captain in the Imperial Russian army of the 19th century. His fellow officers gamble constantly, but his poverty precludes him from joining them. One night he meets an aging countess, Evans, who apparently...read more

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Bizarre and atmospheric supernatural drama based on a classic short story by Russian poet Aleksander Pushkin. Walbrook is a dashing but impoverished captain in the Imperial Russian army of the 19th century. His fellow officers gamble constantly, but his poverty precludes him from joining

them. One night he meets an aging countess, Evans, who apparently has the secret of winning at faro, a secret for which, it is rumored, she has sold her soul. Determined to gain the secret for himself, Walbrook seduces the countess's companion, Mitchell, who tells him about a secret staircase. The

captain sneaks into the house of the countess at night, and she is frightened to death when she sees him. Walbrook flees the house, but later dreams that he has the secret. He goes to a gambling house and takes on his chief rival for the affections of a young lady. Just as he is about to play his

winning card, an ace, it changes before his eyes to a queen with the face of the countess. The story has been filmed at least a dozen times, including eight silents and a French version in 1965, but this is easily the best, blessed with good performances and a skillful, literary style. Dame Edith

Evans began her screen career in earnest after her grotesque and effective performance here. She had previously appeared only in a pair of forgotten silent films some 35 years before. The period settings and costumes are superb, and the film packs a jolt not easily forgotten.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Bizarre and atmospheric supernatural drama based on a classic short story by Russian poet Aleksander Pushkin. Walbrook is a dashing but impoverished captain in the Imperial Russian army of the 19th century. His fellow officers gamble constantly, but his po… (more)

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