Joan Crawford’s on peak form in Curtiz’s classic noir-melodrama about a hard-working mother at odds with her daughter.
Dir Michael Curtiz
With Joan Crawford, Zachary Scott, Jack Carson, Ann Blyth
Beginning with a murder – which is then explained by the titular character’s confessional chronicle of passion, intrigue and betrayal – Curtiz’s somewhat loose adaptation of James M Cain’s novel is a blistering blend of melodrama and film noir. As Mildred (Crawford) toils to raise her daughters – the elder of whom is wayward and ungrateful – her efforts are repeatedly undermined by the men in her life.