Review: ‘Secret Beyond the Door…’

Film carries the Diana Productions label, a combo of Walter Wanger, Fritz Lang and Joan Bennett who have been responsible for several other Diana thrillers. It is arty, with almost surrealistic treatment in camera angles, story-telling mood and suspense, as producer-director Lang hammers over his thrill points.

Film carries the Diana Productions label, a combo of Walter Wanger, Fritz Lang and Joan Bennett who have been responsible for several other Diana thrillers. It is arty, with almost surrealistic treatment in camera angles, story-telling mood and suspense, as producer-director Lang hammers over his thrill points.

Co-starring with Bennett is Michael Redgrave. He disappoints as the man with an anti-woman complex who nearly murders his wife before finding out what his trouble is. Bennett is good as the rich, useless society girl who finds a love so strong she would rather die than give it up.

Mental complexities of the principals makes it sometimes hard to sort out the various motivations used to spin the tale. It’s based on a story by Rufus King, scripted by Silvia Richards. Such psychiatric tricks as mental cases who recoil at locked doors, lilacs, or become oddly stimulated by physical combat and looks are some of the suspense devices.

Secret Beyond the Door...

Production

Universal/Diana. Director Fritz Lang; Producer Fritz Lang; Screenplay Silvia Richards; Camera Stanley Cortez; Editor Arthur Hilton; Music Miklos Rozsa; Art Director Max Parker

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1947. Running time: 98 MIN.

With

Joan Bennett Michael Redgrave Anne Revere Barbara O'Neil Natalie Schafer

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