In 1943, bombs were falling on London, yet the British kept making movies, and some very good ones at that. Granger, a young pilot, meets Calvert, a peeress, as the ancestral home of her family is being sold. They begin to compare notes about their pasts and learn that his mother's
forebearer was madly in love with the ancestor from whom Calvert took her name. Flashback to the 19th century where we meet Lockwood, a very poor young girl who was abandoned by her father. She is befriended by Calvert (as her own ancestor) at their school. Calvert is very wealthy and becomes
wealthier when she marries Mason, a marquis. But their marriage is loveless. Lockwood falls for a young ensign and elopes. Mason doesn't want a wife but he does want an heir. Calvert has a child and years pass. She attends the theater one night and sees Lockwood. Calvert hires her old pal as a
governess for the child and also finds that she is more than passingly intrigued by Granger, as the young leading man who has been playing in the role opposite Lockwood. Once inside the mansion, Lockwood becomes Mason's mistress and deviously plans to get Calvert out of her life by pushing her and
Granger closer together. Calvert and Granger are getting ready to move to Jamaica, where he is a rich man, but Lovell, the prince regent, prevails on her to stay so as to avoid a huge, juicy scandal. Calvert becomes ill and Lockwood, angered by the fact that her best-laid plans have gone awry,
allows her friend to die. Granger hears of this and becomes enraged, so much so that he beats Lockwood into a pulp and she dies. As the film ends, we have returned to modern times and Granger and Calvert leave the house sale smiling. We can only presume that they have found something in each other
that should have been consummated years before and they mean to do just that now. England had been making war movies to help the patriotic effort and small comedies to take minds off the buzz-bombs. Then this one came along and did so well at the box office that a series of "Gainsborough Gothics"
followed. The public, if not the critics, ate them up and it was soon the "wicked lady of the month" time as the pictures flowed freely. Lockwood and Mason, who had been making movies for almost 10 years each, both became superstars due to this one. Granger (whose real name is James Stewart) was
appearing in his first large role after eight small ones, and he took the audience's fancy. Arliss, a onetime screenwriter, went on to make many of the more popular costume dramas released by Gainsborough.
Cast & Details See all »
- Rating: NR
- Review: In 1943, bombs were falling on London, yet the British kept making movies, and some very good ones at that. Granger, a young pilot, meets Calvert, a peeress, as the ancestral home of her family is being sold. They begin to compare notes about their pasts a… (more)