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The Clairvoyant [DVD]
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The first ever DVD release of this classic British thriller The Great Maximus (Claude Rains Casablanca, Lawrence of Arabia) has got a new act for the music halls where he makes his living. Working with his beautiful wife Rene (Fay Wray King Kong), he poses as a mind reader. It s all a trick, of course: he certainly doesn t have the gift for real. Or so he thinks... When he correctly predicts a terrible train crash, Maximus becomes an instant celebrity. But his new-found fame, and his friendship with sultry Christine Shawn (Jane Baxter), threatens his marriage. Worse is to come: he is accused not of foreseeing accidents but actually causing them... Extra Features include: Booklet notes and Best of British trailers
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Top Customer Reviews
The entire cast give very believable performances and I was reminded of Hitchcock's work in British films at about the same period. Mary Clare, as Maximus' mother, is extremely good and her acting in a key scene is quite remarkable. You'll know which scene wnen you watch the film.
This was one of several films made in England at this time by American star Fay Wray, hot on the heels of her success in King Kong. She and Jane Baxter(a now sadly forgotten actress)compliment each other as the women in Maximus' life.
The Clairvoyant is of course now rich in authentic period feel and the music hall scenes are very similar to those in The Thirty-Nine Steps, made the same year. A worthy addition to the Best of British series guaranteed to excite any viewer, the print used is pretty good although not without minor blemishes as would be expected.
Directed by the prolific Maurice Elvey, with a substantial contribution from uncredited producer Michael Balcon, Elvey does a fine job in creating an enjoyable atmospheric thriller.
Claude Rains follows up his excellent performance from a few years earlier in "The Invisible Man" with another impressively well-rounded performance, expertly conveying the emotions of his troubled character "The Great Maximus". Fay Wray also produces a sensitive performance as Rains wife, subtly displaying a range of emotions as she fears losing her husband, with Jane Baxter also putting in a good performance as "the other woman" who threatens the couple's marriage.
The suspenseful atmosphere is skilfully built up as the clairvoyant's phoney mind-reading act eventually leads to the correct prediction of a train crash - followed by the nightmare scenario of being accused of causing accidents.
The movie also features a number of familiar faces from the 1930's, including Felix Aylmer, (Will Hay fans can keep an eye out for a young Graham Moffatt in a small role, playing the part of a page boy). Undoubtedly one of the best British movies of the 1930's, if you're a fan of Alfred Hitchcock's early British output, this movie is worthy of your attention.
Considering the age of the movie, picture and sound quality are generally OK. The extras are a collection of Best of British trailers and a two-page leaflet containing a few interesting notes about the film, the writer, director and producer, plus Claude Rains and Fay Wray.Read more ›
To be able to pull a trick like that; conning the audience into believing he can tell the future, then to suddenly find he can actually do it! A thrilling tale which can be watched again and again. If its your first time to the oldies, this is a must.
I agree with all the other reviews; much of which I would have written myself but didn't want to bore anyone with repeats. Enjoy the film!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Really enjoyed this film
Perfect for a Sunday afternoon or a rainy day
Really good story and well acted and not over
acted and dated as some of the older films... Read more
I like Claude Rains and Fay Wray. This Odeon DVD release features good picture and sound (if not pristine or "restored") and includes opening sequence on the steamship... Read morePublished on 27 Jan. 2013 by Dean Dreher
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. Read morePublished on 29 Aug. 2012 by Spike Owen