Woman Condemned - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Woman Condemned Reviews

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½ February 5, 2009
Very low budget and slow movie, a definite curio. The acting is not very good, amateurishly directed. Watchable though, at least it's not overlong.
½ March 29, 2007
When a singer who is a radio station's star atrraction (Lane) takes a mysterious leave of absense, the station manager becomes concerned that the largest sponser of her show may pull out. He hires a private detective (Dell) to locate her and to find out why she needed the break... but when the P.I.l is arrested for the murder of the singer, things start to get desperate on all fronts.

"The Woman Condemned" is a film that straddles the line between the mystery and comedy genres. The weird way through which Dell's lady P.I. Barbara Hammond and skirt-chasing gossip reporter Jerry Beall (Hemingway) meet and get married is absurd and hilarious, but the plot surrounding the murder of the singer and Beall's attempts to uncover proof of Hammond's innocense is a pretty serious (if a bit far-fetched, once all the details come to light) mystery tale.

This is one of those films that time has passeed by. The camerawork and acting is more reminicent of a silent movie than is healthy for the film (I had the same complaint about the other film from this director that I've seen, "Sucker Money") and the third act twists have become more eye-rolling than shocking with the 70+ years of mystery films that have been made since its release. However, the pace is fast enough and the set-up odd enough that the film will keep the attention of viewers who enjoy 1930s cinema. (The plot is also engaging enough that with some updating and rewriting of the ending, it would make a better remake candidate than all those 1980s movies everyone in Hollywood seems intent on revisiting.)

The Woman Condemned
Starring: Richard Hemingway, Claudia Dell, Lola Lane, Paul Ellis, and Mischa Auer
Director: Mrs. Wallace Reid (Dorothy Reid)

On a note that has little to do with the movie, I've never seen anyone credited by their husband' name before. "Mrs. Wallace Reid" (aka Doroty Reid, maiden name Dorothy Davenport) was a one-time silent movie star--and apparently quite a prominant one--who turned to writing, directing and producing later in her career. Although her husband in the early 1920s, it was 1935 before she stopped using "Mrs. Wallace Reid" as her credit line.

That's complete trivia, but since I did a little research into that odd credit, I thought I'd pass along the fruit of my inquiry. (It's rare I bother researching diretors, or even stars.)
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