No denying this has a very inspired by Alfred Hitchcock thriller feel to it, especially even having the same actor, John Williams, playing the cop like he did in Dial M For Murder. Even the poster artwork has that Hitchcock look but it’s no bad thing at all as you will find this is an excellent movie filled with mystery.
I discovered this film by looking into the work of screenplay and playwright Janet Green. Having been very impressed by her work on the two sublime Basil Dearden films “Sapphire” and “Victim” I was compelled to find more by this talented lady. Midnight Lace is in fact based on a novel, play she had written with the title of “Matilda Shouted Fire“. Maybe a better title as the Midnight Lace really is a macguffin.
My Mum brought me up with Calamity Jane, so that is where I know Doris Day mostly from. Mum wasn’t there for Doris though, she was in love with Howard Keel, hence Seven Brides For Seven Brothers was nicely forced upon me too. (I still adore both films but don’t tell anyone!). It’s wasn’t just Doris Day that intrigued me but also Doctor Dolittle himself Rex Harrison. So one of the curiosities to watch Midnight Lace was to see Doris and Rex out of their musical comfort zone and thrust into a psychological drama together.
Tagline – Even with the arms of her love around her…she still felt the menace of that voice in the night!
Rex Harrison and Doris Day play husband and wife team Anthony and Kit Preston. Anthony is a wealthy business man in the city of London and Kit is eager to spend time with her husband, at home or on holiday but unfortunately Anthony is busy most of the time. Which leaves our Kit venerable on her own. After being warned not to go out in the thick smog in the city, it’s a real “pea-souper” as a Londoner of the time would say. Kit happily but stupidly makes her way blindly across the park, until to her horror a strange weird voice appears near her. The creepy high pitched, almost computer sounding voice goes on to tell her that he is going to kill her by the end of the month!
Creepy Voice – Careful, Mrs. Preston. I wouldn’t want you to get hurt. Not yet.
Horrified Kit dashes to the safety of her apartment. To her absolute terror she starts receiving these menacing, terrifying calls from that same scary voice, telling her of all the macabre things he is going to do to her. Both Kit and Anthony call Scotland Yard and soon Inspector Byrnes (John Williams) is on the case.
The movie has a nice pace to it, throws a number of twists and turns at you. Manages to find enough suspects looking right dodgy wandering around the London streets from the likes of a hunky builder Brian (John Gavin) to weaselly Malcolm (Roddy McDowall) and numerous bunch of shifty characters popping up throughout. But hey Kit could just be going doolally!
Can she find out who is stalking her or is she losing her mind? I’m sure many have seen this one but if not it’s definitely worth tracking down. Thanks for popping on by. Mikey Wolfie.
Tagline – The woman in the midnight lace…Target for temptation… or terror?