Saturday, January 17, 2015

1945 - THE SEVENTH VEIL, incredibly over the top and incredibly entertaining drama

This is a mix of classical music and psychology which would probably give 50 Shades of Grey a run for it's money in the sexual masochism department.  British actor Ann Todd really plays off of her ice princess look is the ward of James Mason her rich benefactor who all but physically tortures her into becoming a famous classical pianist.  When Todd falls in love with an artist, Mason takes his cane and hits Todd's hands with it so she will never be able to perform again.  This is the high point of the film.

Into the mix with Mason and Todd's fun and games is Herbert Lom as the psychiatrist tying to straighten things.  This film would have a viewer believe that one visit to Lom and with a little shot of some kind of narcotic, Todd is running her mouth off to Lom about her strange private life.  Herbert Lom is probably remembered today as Chief Inspector Dreyfuss in the Pink Panther movies.

All this stuff is very entertaining for some reason and this film was a huge hit in England in the 1940's.  Even watching it today it is incredibly easy to get caught up in this story and I'm not actually sure why.  Is it Mason's performance or Todd's porcelain looks?  Do the classical music excerpts that run throughout the film add a layer of class to the film? Finally, is the strange masochist streak that runs through the Mason and Todd relationship some sort of erotic turn on for an audience?

Whatever is going on in this film it's very entertaining and something of a forerunner in the erotic thriller genre.

94 minutes

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