Bombshell on the Box – Gene Alert!
LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN, (Ch4, Fri Jan 29, 1.20pm)
Gene Tierney is at her most beautiful in the 1945 Leave Her To Heaven as Ellen Berent Harland, an evil, manipulative and possessive woman who resorts to murder to make sure her husband Richard (Cornel Wilde) doesn’t share his love with anyone else. John M Stahl’s film also stars Vincent Price and the lovely Jeanne Crain.
At times, the movie – which we think is more turgid, trashy melodrama than stylish film noir – is ridiculously far-fetched. However, it has many critical champions – among them Martin Scorsese – thanks to its exquisite, Oscar-winning cinematography by Leon Shamroy.
Gene (who is said to have been assigned the part after Rita Hayworth refused it, and is pretty good as the ice-cold bitch – she was Oscar nominated, after all) looks every inch the bombshell – in a series of gorgeous outfits by Kay Nelson. In fact, she’s first seen wearing this season’s nude shades – of clothes and nails – with glossy red lips. As screen psychopaths go, they don’t come more stylish.
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