moira finnie wrote:...I wish that they were showing Ulmer's Carnegie Hall (1947), which is kind of a bio of the landmark featuring great music, of course, but also Marsha Hunt, whose (most consistent) leading man in that movie is...Frank McHugh! (not the usual pick, huh?--but quite an interesting choice, as F.Mc. was in Back Street (1941) too). 1/1/14-12:53pm
Well Moira, here is your chance. Tonight, “CARNEGIE HALL”
will be part of the festival of films TCM will show to honor Edgar G. Ulmer.
And for my money if anyone sees only one movie, I’d highly recommend “HER SISTER’S SECRET”
starring Nancy Coleman and Margaret Lindsay. I had planned to do a write up on it and didn't get around to it; but the SSO’s KingRat did a nice job writing about it when it appeared at TCMFF’s this April. You can read his comments below. And may I urge you to please please pay special attention to African-American actress FRANCES WILLIAMS.
She didn’t do a lot of films, but Ulmer is particularly attentive to her portrayal. Though she is the Maid, she is treated with respect and is most definitely part of the family in the film. Also, may I throw one more shrimp on the barbie and recommend a nifty hard=core low budget little crime drama called "MURDER IS MY BEAT."
It stars the most infamous blonde of the fifties: BARBARA PAYTON!!! See her!!
kingrat wrote:Her Sister’s Secret (1946, dir. Edgar G. Ulmer) has a plot similar to The Great Lie and To Each His Own. Toni (Nancy Cameron) becomes pregnant after an encounter with a handsome soldier (Phillip Reed) at Mardi Gras, and her married sister Renee (Margaret Lindsay) raises the baby. Before the film, we got to hear from Ulmer’s daughter, Arianna Ulmer Cipes, who is attractive and articulate. She mentioned that Margaret Lindsay was a close family friend who even lived with the Ulmers at one time.
Ulmer got a much bigger budget than usual, and it shows, especially in the set design, costumes, and the number of extras in the Mardi Gras scenes. Arianna Cipes pointed out that her mother claimed one of the coats worn by Margaret Lindsay, but she didn’t say if it was the cloth coat or the fur. The New York apartment where Renee and her husband live is quite stylish. The real star of the movie is the cinematographer, Franz Planer, who lights each shot beautifully. There are some fine camera movements, including the overhead boom shots for Mardi Gras. Both Nancy Cameron and Margaret Lindsay give strong and sympathetic performances. Felix Bressart has the important supporting role of a café owner, and Henry Stephenson has a nice turn as the bookish father of the two young women.
It’s refreshing that Toni is not blamed for wanting a night of romance with a stranger, and the only punishment, surely a great enough one, is the separation from her baby. When she wants her baby back, we can sympathize with both sisters.
I don’t want to oversell the film—as a couple of friends said, it’s enjoyable but not great—but fans of Ulmer, the actors, and 40s women’s pictures will probably like it. I’m a little unsure of my response because this movie was shown late at night after I’d seen three other films the same day, which is far from ideal. Because it started at 10:00 and was opposite several other interesting films, attendance was only in the 75-100 range. 4/23/2014-2:10pm