Made largely to showcase Howard Hughes' latest inamoratas Faith Domergue, Where Danger Lives starts off a little slow and more than somewhat unintentionally amusing, laying on nice young doctor Robert Mitchum's nice guy credentials with a trowel (he even tells a bedtime story about Elmer the Elephant to a little girl in an iron lung). Things don't immediately improve once he meets Domergue's suicidal femme fatale, but once Claude Rains turns up for his one scene as her `father,' it starts getting better and better and heads straight for near-classic status as they find themselves on the run, Mitch nursing a surprisingly medically accurate serious concussion ("I may talk rationally but my decisions may not make much sense.") and Domergue manifesting some pretty unpleasant symptoms of her own ("Nobody pities me!"). Of course, we know he must be having problems even before he takes that bump on the head since no-one in possession of a full set of marbles would pass over nurse Maureen O'Sullivan for Faith Domergue even if she doesn't take off her surgical mask to answer the phone - O'Sullivan may have been the director's wife but she's barely seen without it. As their bolt for the border goes increasingly badly, the eternally underrated John Farrow mirrors his condition with a more surreal set of characters and situations - not least a truly bizarre plot development during `Whiskers Week.' The great Nicolas Musuraca does his usual wonders with the black and white cinematography and Farrow throws in one of the longest of his uninterrupted single takes, a key seven-minute hotel room scene that's so fluid and cinematic despite consisting of only two people in a small, dingy room that you don't even notice there are no cuts.
Like many of Odeon's RKO titles, lack of access to the original negative has meant that the quality isn't as good as the US release, which is available either as part of Film Noir Classics Collection 5 [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC
] or as a double-bill, Where Danger Lives & Tension [DVD]  [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC