Wednesday, October 21, 2015

31 Days of Halloween - Day 21 - Movie 1

Twenty years after murdering her husband and his lover, Joan Crawford leaves the sanitarium and returns home to her now adult daughter.  While she naturally feels awkward and out of place, her behavior becomes more and more troubling. When people start vanishing mysteriously her family begins to wonder if she was fit to be released after all.

Strait-Jacket (1964) is a pretty tight thriller from William Castle. The psychological suspense is genuine, heightened by Joan Crawford's performance. The cast as a whole is good, particularly Diane Baker as Crawford's daughter. George Kennedy supports as the skeevy handy man, and Lee Majors appears as Crawford's two-timing husband. Because it's a William Castle film, you know it's not going to be straight forward and that there's going to be a gimmick. In this case it's not broadcast, but is also pretty apparent what it will be. Even so, it packs a punch sold by the performance of one of the key cast members.

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