Marnie is the character study of a thief and a liar, but what makes her tick remains clouded even after a climax reckoned to be shocking but somewhat missing its point.
Tippi Hedren, whom Hitchcock intro’d in The Birds returns in a particularly demanding role and Sean Connery makes his American film bow, as the two principal protagonists in this adaptation of Winston Graham’s best-seller. Complicated story line offers Hedren as a sexy femme who takes office jobs, then absconds with as much cash as she can find in the safe, changing color of her tresses and obtaining new employment for similar purposes. Plot becomes objective when she is recognized by her new employer, book publisher Connery, as the girl who stole $10,000 from a business associate, and rather than turn her in marries her.
That’s merely the beginning, and balance of unfoldment dwells on husband’s efforts to ferret mystery on why she recoils from the touch of any man # himself included # and why other terrors seem to overcome her.
Hedren, undertaking role originally offered Grace Kelly for a resumption of her screen career, lends credence to a part never sympathetic. It’s a difficult assignment which she fulfills satisfactorily, although Hitchcock seldom permits her a change of pace which would have made her character more interesting. Connery handles himself convincingly, but here, again, greater interest would have resulted from greater facets of character as he attempts to explore femme’s unexplained past.