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The Dark Mirror [DVD]
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This 1946 film Dark Mirror stars Olivia de Havilland as twin sisters, one of whom has committed a murder. Since each twin can provide an alibi for the other, a rumpled detective (Thomas Mitchell) and a handsome shrink (Lew Ayres) are compelled to get to the truth, a task not made easy by the sisters. At first the twins seem physically and emotionally similar. Subtle nuances differentiate their personalities and it is De Havilland's fine acting that peels away the layers of emotionalism that define each sister's character traits. De Havilland, aided by keen camera work by Siodmak, keeps viewers on edge as she shifts roles within frames that are shared by both sisters.
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Top Customer Reviews
The Olive region one DVD is a handsome B&W transfer in the appropriate 1.33 aspect ratio.
I recommend this to anyone who likes proper movies (instead of this bilge we get nowadays) and really good female acting.
A man appears to have been murdered by one of the identical twin Collins sisters, but both of whom have an alibi. The police and the psychiatrist have their work cut out...
Straight out of the corner of postwar Hollywood that began to take fascination with mental illness, The Dark Mirror triumphs more as a technical exercise than as anything resembling thought provoking analysis. The simplistic Freudian elements aside, film is impressively mounted and performed by Siodmak and de Havilland respectively. Story follows the trajectory of a cat-and-mouse game, with the makers nicely putting us the viewers into the same struggle the authorities have in sussing out which sister is the damaged killer.
Siodmak's (The Spiral Staircase) attention to detail and grasp of mood setting really lifts the piece to greater heights. Aided by the considerable photographic skills of Krasner (The Set-Up), Siodmak creates a world of psychological disturbance, a place aligned with suspense and symbolism. Right from the doozy of an opening scene to the denouement, Siodmak manages to keep the contrivances to the rear of the play and let de Havilland and the visual textures be the prime focus.
The effects work is very good, with de Havilland having to quite often play off against herself. Sure in today's age of High Definition et al, you don't have to stretch your viewing experience to see how the effects were done, but why would you?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent, excellent film - great interplay as to which of the sisters is in shot throughout - ODH brilliant as usual - love it !Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer