Chase A Crooked Shadow
(U) 84min (Optimum DVD retail)
Directed by Michael Anderson, a man whose eclectic CV incorporates The Dam Busters and Logan’s Run, this low-key, high-concept thriller works through its original central premise with some solid character work.
Filmed in black and white in 1958, its Hitchcockian flavour is not concealed. When young heiress Kimberley Prescott (Anne Baxter) is confronted on her Barcelona balcony one evening by a man claiming to be her apparently dead brother Wade (Richard Todd), she is convinced he’s an imposter. Yet everyone who can refute his story finds it perfectly plausible, and only police inspector Vargas (Herbert Lom, solid as ever, although his character’s initial portrayal as a gambling charmer is too-quickly submerged to service the plot) retains a degree of scepticism.
Beyond the film’s dated portrayal of a young woman in apparently troubled circumstances being almost her family’s property, there are many suspenseful moments, while the volte face denouement is truly worth waiting for. Minimal extras.