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      Sudden Fear

      Released Aug 6, 1952 1h 50m Mystery & Thriller List
      92% Tomatometer 13 Reviews 84% Audience Score 1,000+ Ratings Following a whirlwind courtship, acclaimed playwright Myra Hudson (Joan Crawford) marries Lester Blaine (Jack Palance), a slick actor she has just fired from her latest play. Shortly after the honeymoon, Myra overhears Lester and his lover, Irene (Gloria Grahame), plotting to murder the wealthy writer for her inheritance. Shattered by the revelation, Myra pulls herself together and hatches a revenge scheme. But can she go through with her violent plans? Read More Read Less Watch on Fandango at Home Buy Now

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      Critics Reviews

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      Melissa Anderson Village Voice Like many underrecognized treasures, David Miller's Sudden Fear fits into and defies different genres, its convention-scrambling partly the result of the fact that the film looks both forward and back. Aug 10, 2016 Full Review Francois Truffaut Cahiers du Cinéma Outside of two very short but fairly unpleasing sequences, there is not a shot in this film that isn’t necessary to its dramatic progression. Not a shot, either, that isn’t fascinating and doesn’t make us think it is a masterpiece of filmmaking. May 10, 2022 Full Review Josh Larsen LarsenOnFilm ...one of Crawford's first forays into camp. Rated: 3/4 Aug 18, 2021 Full Review Christopher Lloyd The Film Yap This forgotten woman-in-distress film noir stars Joan Crawford as a rich playwright and Jack Palance as the younger actor looking to marry and off her. Nice-looking but poorly plotted. Rated: 3/5 Jan 25, 2021 Full Review Matt Brunson Film Frenzy A sharp thriller with film noir undercurrents. Rated: 3/4 Jan 24, 2021 Full Review Frank J. Avella Edge Media Network the draw here is Crawford, and she delivers magnificently. If you can toss away any hints of "Mommie Dearest" (and I realize that is difficult), you might truly appreciate an actress who knows when to hold back and when to let loose. Rated: A Jan 23, 2021 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

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      Jeff M This is an absolute must for anyone who loves classic movies, particularly film noir of the 40s and 50s. It's an extraordinarily entertaining and surprisingly engrossing tale of love, betrayal and revenge. At its best moments, it feels like something Hitchcock would have been proud to make at the peak of his prowess. There's one moment in particular during the climax involving a wind-up toy that had my pulse racing. Crawford is stupendous here - it's a shame her reputation has been overshadowed by the MOMMIE DEAREST persona because one tends to forget she was one heck of a movie star. Palance had a face that was made for villainy and holds his own in one of his very first movie roles. Both were Oscar nominated and deservedly so. The last 20 minutes are a whirlwind, and while I had an idea where we'd end up, I had no idea how we were going to get there. In the end, it all falls upon padded shoulders of Crawford, and she is electrifying - equal here to her Oscar-winning turn in MILDRED PIERCE. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 01/17/24 Full Review shane c Another wonderful Crawford film! Rated 5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Ken R Marvellous style, suspense (rivalling Hitchcock) and strong performances boost this David Miller directed film into very interesting heights. Master cinematographer Charles Lang (How the West was Won) adds handsomely to the locations and gripping situations, making this a better than average RKO top liner. Joan Crawford definitely deserved her Oscar nomination for a tour de force performance as the woman in love and peril. Almost a decade before, MGM had dumped Joan's contract, and following her success in RKO's ‘Sudden Fear' MGM wanted her back to make another film - they picked a poor subject (Torch Song) that failed rather dismally - making it a bad choice for everyone. The cast and crew for ‘Sudden Fear' all work hard to make this perhaps, sometimes over the top, suspensor, a winner all the way. Not to be missed by lovers of strong noir classics – with an early big score by Elmer Bernstein (Walk on the Wild Side). Recently re-mastered DVDs have been lovingly restored and are fine in every detail. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/25/21 Full Review william d Sudden fear starts out pretty slow. Then right around the 45 minute mark the plot twist kicks in and the movie really picks up the pace. This is a good and suspenseful thriller, despite an ending that wraps things up a little too conveniently. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review steve d Unsettling but not especially memorable. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 03/30/23 Full Review paul d A very fine noir thriller with two outstanding, and Oscar-nominated, performances from Joan Crawford and Jack Palance. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Read all reviews
      Sudden Fear

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      Cast & Crew

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis Following a whirlwind courtship, acclaimed playwright Myra Hudson (Joan Crawford) marries Lester Blaine (Jack Palance), a slick actor she has just fired from her latest play. Shortly after the honeymoon, Myra overhears Lester and his lover, Irene (Gloria Grahame), plotting to murder the wealthy writer for her inheritance. Shattered by the revelation, Myra pulls herself together and hatches a revenge scheme. But can she go through with her violent plans?
      Director
      David Miller
      Producer
      Joe Kaufmann
      Screenwriter
      Robert Smith, Lenore J. Coffee
      Production Co
      Joseph Kaufmann Productions
      Genre
      Mystery & Thriller
      Original Language
      English
      Release Date (Theaters)
      Aug 6, 1952, Original
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Dec 13, 2016
      Runtime
      1h 50m
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