4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
The perils of a prophet.,
This review is from: The Clairvoyant [DVD] (DVD)
The Clairvoyant is directed by Maurice Elvey and adapted to the screen by Charles Bennett and Bryan Edgar Wallace from the novel written by Ernst Lothar. It stars Claude Rains, Fay Wray and Jane Baxter.
Maximus: King of the Mind Readers.
Out of Gaumont British and Gainsborough Pictures, The Clairvoyant is a compact 80 minute picture that tells of a bogus clairvoyant played by Rains who suddenly finds he does in fact have the gift. However, it's a gift he can only bring out when he is in the presence of a woman named Christine (Baxter), something which greatly unsettles his marriage to Rene (Wray). Film is structured in two wholesome parts, the first finds Maximus and Rene bluffing their way on the entertainment circuit, with Maximus then finding the gift and predicting events that really occur, both good and bad. Then the film greatly shifts in tone to play out as the gift being a curse, Maximus' private life comes under great strain and a turn of events see him come under snarling scrutiny by his peers. The seamless shifts from moody to jovial and back again is a credit to the makers, with Rains turning in a powerful performance in one of the last British films he made before heading to America and the big studio contract.
It will not surprise with the ending, and the running time means that some interesting themes are not fully born out and expanded upon. But it's very well performed across the board and has genuine moments of tension and horror once the jovial atmosphere dissipates. 7/10