Posted by Solomon on 6/17/2017, 8:19 am
Summary: Politician's wife tries to shake off blackmailer from her criminal past
"The Strange Mrs. Crane" (1948) has been a noir that's been almost entirely overlooked by critics and fans, probably because it was an indie production that became rather unavailable and not shown on television in earlier days. That's changing because the film is currently available on YouTube. It definitely is worth seeking out and viewing.
The story has lawyer Pierre Watkin running for governor. His wife, Marjorie Lord, has a criminal past, unknown to him. Her old partner in crime, Robert Shayne, shows up. He works as a salesman in an establishment that sells fur coats. There he has enticed another employee, Ruth Brady. Lord and Watkin show up to buy a mink coat, whereupon Shayne spots her and hatches his blackmail scheme.
The blindness of Watkins and his drive to become governor lead him to place Lord under pressures she'd rather avoid. The criminal side of her nature re-emerges. The story generates a lot of feverish intensity on the part of Lord and Brady too. Lord has to cover up her worry in public so as not to reveal her knowledge of Shayne. She has to swim in a stream of deception and its course takes her to unexpected places. This one-hour thriller comes complete with a trial and courtroom sequence for fans of that element. The ending is a stunner.