The Scarlet Web (1954)

  |  Crime, Drama

The Scarlet Web (1954) Poster

An insurance investigator is framed for murder after a pretty woman hires him to recover a letter from a man who wants to blackmail her.


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9 July 2016 | Leofwine_draca
| Semi-serious British crime film
The one thing that separates THE SCARLET WEB from the mass of British B-movie crime films of the 1950s is the comedy. Now, I'm not sure whether it was intentional or not, however, this film is chock full of amusing one-liners and non-sequiters that are guaranteed to have viewers scratching their heads. It's awful, in a way, insofar as being very stilted and dated, and yet in a way, it's also oddly amusing.

The film stars the unremarkable Griffith Jones as an insurance investigator who comes out of prison having been there undercover and immediately falls into the arms of femme fatale Zena Marshall (DR. NO). Although she's very attractive, Marshall's overacting style makes her something of a laughable figure, so it's a relief when the tough Hazel Court shows up as Jones's boss and indulges in plenty of witty and not-so witty repartee with our stolid hero.

The plot is far from realistic and sees Jones framed for murder and subsequently pursued by the cops while he tries to catch those really responsible. There's not much mystery here and not much of anything really apart from some dated romance scenes and incessant shots of Jones climbing in and out of windows. However, Court is as lovely as ever, and you do get the likes of Ronnie Stevens and Michael Balfour in support; plus Molly Raynor steals her scenes as the acidic Miss Riggs.

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