Ingrid Bergman won her first of three Oscars for this suspense thriller, crafted with surprising tautness by normally genteel women’s picture director George Cukor. Bergman stars as Paula Alquist, a late 19th century English singer studying music in Italy. However, Paula abandons her studies because she’s fallen in love with dapper, handsome Gregory Anton (Charles Boyer). The couple marries and returns to the U.K. and a home inherited by Paula from her aunt, herself a famous singer, who was mysteriously murdered in the house ten years before. Once they have moved in, Gregory, who is in reality a jewel thief and the murderer of Paula’s aunt, launches a campaign of terror designed to drive his new bride insane. Though Paula is certain that she sees the house’s gaslights dim every evening and that there are strange noises coming from the attic, Gregory convinces Paula that she’s imagining things. Gregory’s efforts to make Paula unstable are aided by an impertinent maid, Nancy (teenager Angela Lansbury in her feature film debut). Meanwhile, a Scotland Yard inspector, Brian Cameron (Joseph Cotten), becomes suspicious of Gregory and sympathetic to Paula’s plight.~ Karl Williams, All Movie Guide
Sitting in the Savoy yesterday evening, there was a generally cocky confidence among the audience that the supirse film was one of two things. A sense of dread among some males that they would be watching ‘27 dresses’ and a sense of optimism among others that the film was ‘10,000BC’.
Therefore there was a general sense of bemusement when a rogue third film appeared on our screens: ‘The Escapist’. Initial confusion subsided and the film, a genuine surprise for the many, was surprisingly good (especially when you compare it to other Surprise films shown at JDIFF, aka ‘Starsky and Hutch’.
Not to give to much away the story centres on Frank Perry, a convict twelve years into his life sentence with no hope of parole. When his estranged daughter falls ill, he is determined he make peace with her before it’s too late. With the help of a dysfunctional band of escapists he plans his escape… It’s definitely one worth a watch. The film has an expected Irish release date of April 4th.