Bette Davis, as we all know, is an American icon, a legendary American movie star, a great American movie actress, winner of multiple Academy Awards and many Academy Award nominations. But this doesn't mean that the acting of the feisty, volatile, tempestuous screen star was always good. She was at her best in the 1930s and 1940s (and in 1950's All About Eve). In some of her work in the 1950s, she lapsed into Bette Davis playing caricatures of Bette Davis, and this is one of those unfortunate occasions (an earlier one is her performance in Beyond the Forest, 1949).
The vehicle here is a dated, stagy melodrama which must have looked tired even in 1951, and must have appealed only as a showy vehicle for Davis. She stars here with her recent husband Gary Merrill, after their successful collaboration in All About Eve. Davis still seems to be playing the part of Margo Channing here; it's a very actressy performance. In addition to being over the top, she's over the hill for the part; she looks overweight and overripe (after all, she'd been making movies for 20 years at this point), hardly the femme fatale who could lure handsome young Anthony Steel away from his much more attractive young fiancee Barbara Murray.
Bette's overdone, actressy performance, replete with lots of eyeball rolling, cigarette lighting and smoking, and cocktail pouring and drinking, combined with a conventional performance from Merrill and the dated, stagy melodrama, cardboard characters, and obvious contrivances of this play, makes for an undistinguished film that is no credit to the Davis filmography. Even the cinematography (this is an independent British production) is bad; it's too dark and has the grainy look of an early TV kinescope. The only memorable feature is the polished performance of Emlyn Williams as an annoying busybody veterinarian constantly sticking his nose into his neighbors' business.