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Gaslight Reviews

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Apeneck F

Super Reviewer

May 9, 2012
A townhouse in 19th Century London with a past: there was a woman murdered there years ago and the murderer never caught. The new couple there should be happy, but the young wife ... troubled. Hears things, sees things, its too bad really. With women as the target audience there's still enough in this strange, brooding gothic tale to please everyone, and was good enough to be remade by Hollywood a scant 4 years later. All the meat's still here in the original, more direct version.

Super Reviewer

April 17, 2010
Not bad version of classic story but missing the mystique and chemistry of the Ingrid Bergman/Charles Boyer take of the same story. Part of the problem is that Walbrook is too obviously cruel and twisted right from the start instead of the more subtle approach taken by Boyer. Also while Diana Wynyrd was a fine actress she did not have the star charisma of Bergman which pulled you into the heroine's dilemma.

Super Reviewer

December 15, 2011
MGM famously tried to destroy this film's negatives so it wouldn't compete with its own 1944 remake starring Charles Boyer and Angela Lansbury. Good thing they didn't, because we wouldn't have the great fortunate of watching the darker side of Anton Walbrook. His villainy may be a little over-the-top, but he does it with such conviction, commitment, and stature that I bought it 100%. If that isn't a testament to how great of an actor he was, I don't know what is.
Drew S

Super Reviewer

November 3, 2010
Nothing special. Fucking Netflix sent this version to me instead of the Ingrid Bergman version. It makes for a marginally compelling tale of deception and murder, but Bella's husband is so over-the-top evil that they should have made his mustache a little longer so he could twist it. Bella herself is mostly ineffectual and whiny, and though you obviously feel sorry for her as she's trapped in this perverse psychological game, she doesn't really offer any interesting insight into her predicament or mental state. She's just a crazy lady with a controlling husband living in a house where an old lady died. It's basically a Victorian Gothic paint-by-numbers.

Super Reviewer

February 1, 2009
Anton Walbrook seems far more sinister than Charles Boyer did in the later Hollywood release. Thank goodness this version survived in spite of MGM's repeated attempts to destroy it.
David S

Super Reviewer

May 20, 2012
An interesting British thriller that isn't great but does possess one great performance from Walbrook as the evil husband. I'd already seen a stage version and so knew what to expect but the film surprised me in its brutality (the strangulation of an old woman in the first few minutes) and its morally ambiguous characters.
August 28, 2012
Pales in comparison to George Cukor's remake but is still pretty damn entertaining in its own right.
June 12, 2012
The 1944 American version is the better known one, but this original British production is tighter and plays the suspense very well.

Grade: B
January 23, 2009
A good movie, but I remember enjoying the remake better. I'll have to try and find it somewhere to watch it again to make sure.
March 16, 2013
A heiress is brought to madness by his scheming, jewel-hungry husband. First film version of the 'Angel Street' play by Patrick Hamilton set in a Victorian London. A solid thriller with compelling dramatic undertones coated in powerful domestic mystery.
Cameron B.
July 22, 2012
It's a frame for how all mysteries should be.
Dave J
July 8, 2011
Friday, July 8, 2011

(1940) Gaslight

First theatrical version of the Patrick Hamilton play which focuses on a just married husband's goal to drive his wife insane while looking for some emeralds at the same time! Quite well done!

3 out of 4
November 25, 2007
Excellent story, very suspenseful. Diana Wynyard is marvelous. This is superior to the also great remake. Well acted, great direction. A first class film, a true classic.
August 11, 2004
Film feels really dated. The remake is better, because this story runs way to swifty (84 min) and the acting isn't as good.

March 22, 2004
Yes, that's right, this is for the 1944 version.

A long time ago, I said it. Angela Lansbury is hot. There, I said it again. And I didn't even recognize her until the movie was almost over, even though I had seen her name in the opening credits.

This was because I was blown away by Ingrid Bergman and her being mentally torn apart by Charles Boyer.

It is all worth it. Fantastic.

Update: The flipside of this rental DVD had the 1940 version on it, which I watched. I think the 44 version is superior, though I did enjoy the role of the former police detective more in the earlier version.
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