- Set Design Glenn Thompson
- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 1 hours, 13 minutes
- Video: Black & White
- Released: July 30, 2002
- Originally Released: 1944
- Label: Alpha Video
- Encoding: Region 0 (Worldwide)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Aspect Ratio: Full Frame - 1.33
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Description by OLDIES.com:
John Carradine delivers the strongest performance of his career in this taut, suspenseful version of the Bluebeard legend. Carradine is the nefarious Gaston, an artist and puppeteer in 19th century Paris who strangles lovely young models when they fail to meet his exacting standards of perfection. Gaston's new model, Lucille, learns of his shocking secret and bravely vows to bring him to justice. This beautifully executed thriller is directed by Edgar G. Ulmer, who sustains a steady level of suspense throughout the film and inspires masterful performances from the entire cast.
In 19th century Paris, someone is murdering young women and dumping their bodies into the Seine. That someone is Gaston (John Carradine), a handsome, brooding painter and puppeteer who strangles his models with a black tie. Jean Parker plays Lucille, a dressmaker who finds herself drawn to Gaston's tortured soul after she attends his puppet opera of FAUST. Gaston's shady art dealer (Ludwig Stossel) knows he kills women, but conceals evidence because his paintings sell. When Gaston's latest victim is recognized in one of his works at an exhibit, inspector LeFevre (George Pembroke) takes steps to trap the mysterious painter. This is an amazing, low-budget work by acclaimed cult director Edgar G. Ulmer. Filled with repertoire costumes and painted backgrounds, the stagey feel nonetheless adds to the claustrophobic air of melancholy that hangs over the film, as if the cast were all puppets themselves in some cheap production. It's not a particularly scary film, but it offers plenty of excitement and has moments of beauty, and Carradine is effective as the quietly tortured, magnetic artist.