25 January 2014 | Michael_Elliott
Decent WWII Thriller
Above Suspicion (1943)
** 1/2 (out of 4)
By-the-numbers WWII drama from MGM has Joan Crawford and Fred MacMurray playing newlyweds who are asked by the government to do some spying as they make their way into Nazi controlled territory. ABOVE SUSPICION was one of the hundreds of films turned out by Hollywood to motivate or at least pursued the country to support the war and to show how evil the Nazi party was. With so many films in this sub-genre it's always hard to find a "great" film and this here certainly isn't one of them. While the film remains slightly entertaining from start to finish, there's really no way to deny the fact that there's just nothing overly special here and it's also incredibly uneven. I say uneven because the tone of the film seems to change from one scene to the next. Sometimes you feel as if you're watching some sort of light comedy and then the next minute everything is being handled so heavily. At times there seems to be a wink-wink going on between the two leads and then the next second everything is back to being dead serious. I thought the entire tone of the film was just wrong and it was incredibly hard for me to believe the story or take it too serious. Both Crawford and MacMurray are good in their roles, although I'm not so sure they play were together. I really didn't buy them as a married couple and I also didn't buy them working together on these missions. Conrad Veidt is good in his role as a good German and Basil Rathbone steals the film as the evil German. Reginald Owen has a good supporting part as well. Again, at just 90-minutes the film moves well enough but there's just not enough going on here to make it worth watching except for fans of the cast.