Uncle Harry

Unsatisfying adaptation of a successful drama that played Broadway for a season, starring Joseph Schildkraut and Eva Le Gallienne. In the play, the story unfolded in a series of flashbacks. The screenplay by Longstreet opted to tell the tale in a more traditional narrative form with a cop-out ending that had to be tacked on to appease the Hays Office. Sanders...read more

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Unsatisfying adaptation of a successful drama that played Broadway for a season, starring Joseph Schildkraut and Eva Le Gallienne. In the play, the story unfolded in a series of flashbacks. The screenplay by Longstreet opted to tell the tale in a more traditional narrative form with a

cop-out ending that had to be tacked on to appease the Hays Office. Sanders is a fabric designer who lives a life of quiet desperation with his old-maid sisters, MacGill and Fitzgerald, in their New Hampshire mansion. While visiting a mill in Quincy, Sanders meets and falls for Raines, a fashion

mavin who has come up from New York. She is charming, bubbly, the antithesis of the dour spinsters. Love blossoms quickly, and Sanders soon asks for Raines' hand in marriage. Raines meets the sisters, and MacGill is delighted that their brother has someone to love, but Fitzgerald, who harbors an

almost incestuous jealousy for Sanders, can barely stand the thought and feigns a heart seizure. Sanders is angered enough by Fitzgerald's behavior to want to do away with her, so he poisons her nightly cup of cocoa. By mistake, MacGill drinks the lethal brew and expires. The evidence points to

Fitzgerald as the killer and she is arrested, tried, and convicted of a crime she did not commit. Fitzgerald can get herself off the hook by telling of Sanders' desire to see her dead, but she keeps mum because she knows that Raines will probably leave Sanders, and he will never have a moment's

peace. At the conclusion, Sanders wakes up to find that it's all been (ugh) a dream. Producer Harrison (long-time Alfred Hitchcock associate) was so incensed at the ending that she strolled from Universal. Director Siodmak must have enjoyed the good sister-bad sister motif, because he also helmed

THE DARK MIRROR which is about a pair of good-bad twins played by Olivia de Havilland. The incest is subtly depicted, but any child over the age of six will recognize the implications.

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