Sleep, My Love (1948)
“…the most terrifying words a man ever whispered to a woman!”
Director: Douglas Sirk
Cast: Claudette Colbert, Robert Cummings, Don Ameche
Synopsis: Alison Courtland wakes up in the middle of the night on board a train, but she cannot remember how she got there. Danger and suspense ensue.
WARNING! This review contains SPOILERS!
I’m quite surprised by the number of negative reviews on the internet about this film. I came into it expecting little: Claudette Colbert is one of my least-favourite actresses and Robert Cummings was always too lightweight for anything remotely serious for my liking, but I was pleasantly surprised by how absorbing it proved to be. The story is old hat, it’s true (will there ever be a husband-secretly-trying-to-kill-wife film that doesn’t feature a shot of him walking slowly up the stairs carrying a tray of something hot, milky and poisonous?), but there’s enough in the detail to make it better than just run of the mill. I like the way Don Ameche never lets that pious expression slip — even when the game’s up and someone’s pointing a gun at him; usually the character would look all shifty and devious as soon as they think nobody is looking at him, but not Ameche. Hazel Brooks, statuesque and Amazonian, makes the most fatale of femmes, as well, and her character’s name is Daphne! I mean, come on — how can you not like a film that has a dangerous sex-bomb called Daphne?
(Reviewed 15th October 2007)