Possessed

Possessed

DVD - 2005
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She loves him when he goes away for months. She loves him when he refuses to marry her. But when callow David Sutton chooses to marry someone else, Louise Howell's love for him takes a darker turn. Give her a gun and she'll love him to death.--Container.

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m
mwillett
Jun 26, 2019

Somewhat reminiscent of (and inferior to) "Mildred Pierce," this does successfully create a noirish mood but comes up short in the credibility department. Particularly in the relationships between Crawford's character and the men played by Van Heflin and Raymond Massey, I didn't buy it for a second, but it does feature the intense mania of a typical Joan Crawford film of the period.

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1nightowl
May 08, 2019

I've never known a film to be so bad and so good at the same time. It makes an excellent attempt to explain a complicated mental disease. And there's plenty of it to go around here. Not only do we have Miss Crawford's inexplicable infatuation with Van Heflin's character without a character but a delusional Raymond Massey who can't seem to help marrying unstable women. There is also Massey's disappearing son. He appears in one brief scene, has no dialog and mysteriously disappears at the age of 9 or 10. If Dad is so desperately lonely, why doesn't he spend time with his own son?

Ah, but then we wouldn't have all that scenery for our Joan to chew up and she does so with unashamed bravado. Isn't that why we watched in the first place?

j
jsinaz
Apr 30, 2017

Very good post-WW2 (1947) film starring Joan Crawford as a woman whose unrequited love for Van Heflin drives her crazy--literally. It costars Raymond Massey as her boss, she being hired as a home nurse to care for Massey's mentally ill wife. If you like film noir, filmed in black and white (of course!), you will most likely like this film. Like many films of its time with a woman as the main character, it is quite melodramatic (think of Now, Voyager), with a classic musical score by the great Franz Waxman. Crawford was nominated for the Best Actress Oscar, but lost to Loretta Young (The Farmer's Daughter) in 1948. Watchable if not "great."

n
Nursebob
Oct 30, 2015

Unceremoniously dumped by the only man she ever loved, an already precariously balanced Joan Crawford begins to lose what few marbles she has left. But when the cad re-enters her life in a most unexpected and unwelcome way she takes a swan dive off the deep end with tragic results. Told mainly in flashbacks from a locked psychiatric ward where Joan lies babbling in a catatonic stupor, Curtis Bernhardt's noirish drama of obsessive love with schizoid flourishes does attempt to educate its audience about mental illness (circa 1947) while still allowing Miss Crawford ample opportunity to glare and despair to her heart's content---garnering her an Oscar nomination in the process. Anchored by co-stars Van Heflin as the callous Lothario and stone-faced Raymond Massey as the one man who truly loves her, Crawford's performance doesn't exactly burn up the screen but it certainly has you smelling smoke.

b
BertBailey
Apr 21, 2013

The conception is so thin and the script too weak to help Crawford portray her very 2-dimensional character, clingy as velcro and insufferable beyond neuroticism -- which turned the first half hour of this near-excruciating. Leo Forbstein's strings-laden music doesn't help much either. Canadian Raymond Massey is all right in this, although there his part makes few requirements. And when Van Heflin plays the piano he does it with a wistful, half-absent look, such as to convince no-one that he's in any attending to his instrument. Put it this way: compared to 'Mildred Pierce,' this is just abysmal. Wasted an irretrievable hour of my life on this. Don't do the same!

j
Janice21383
Aug 13, 2011

Men! If they don't make you fat, they drive you mad. Your alternative is to marry Raymond Massey, but I wouldn't necessarily suggest that to anyone. Crawford's big eyes are useful here, for staring bleakly into nothingness.

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Janice21383
Aug 13, 2011

"DAVID!!!!!!"

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