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Another Mans Poison

Bette Davis , Gary Merrill , Irving Rapper    Unrated   DVD
2.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 149.97
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Bette Davis pulls out all the stops as Janet Frobisher, a devious, selfish vixen who will stop at nothing to get what she wants in Another Man's Poison, a drama deliciously full of unexpected twists and turns. Frobisher is a rich mystery writer who falls in love with her secretary's fiancé and lures him away. But her happiness is far from ensured. She first must deal with a long forgotten ex-convict husband who tries to blackmail her, and then she must scheme her way out of the clutches of her husband's ruthless partner, George Bates (Gary Merrill, Davis's husband in real life). Davis proves why she remains such an acting legend as she dominates the screen in the kind of part that only she could bring to life so vividly.

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Most helpful customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre, disappointing June 23 2003
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.
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By Lawyeraau TOP 100 REVIEWER
This film, based upon the play "Deadlock" by Leslie Sands, is not one of those films that will make the viewer stand up and cheer. Were it not for Bette Davis, it would probably not even merit a viewing, so improbable is the script with which she has to work. The other cast members, as well, have thankless roles.
Davis lights up the screen as mystery novelist, Janet Frobisher, who lives in isolated splendor on the Yorkshire moors in England. Her nearest neighbor is the local busy body and veterinarian, Dr. Henderson, a role gamely played by Emlyn Williams. Frobisher, a selfish, amoral vixen, falls in love with her secretary's fiance, Larry (Anthony Steele). One little problem stands in her way of eternal bliss. She, herself, is married to a man with a criminal past, one with whom she has had little contact in recent years. In the first few minutes of the film, it is revealed that she has single handedly and cold bloodedly dispatched her husband, who has had the misfortune to show up unexpectedly, to the great beyond. Unfortunately for her, she gets an unwelcome, surprise visitor on the heels of her murderous act, when her husband's partner in crime, George Bates, shows up looking for him.
The improbable storyline that follows is kept afloat by Ms. Davis alone. Gary Merrill, the real life husband of Bette Davis at the time, stoically and woodenly plays the thankless role of George Bates. He, as well as the rest of the cast, fades into the background, when on screen with Ms. Davis. Even Ms. Davis, however, is unable to keep this clunker totally afloat. Stagey, with leaden dialogue and a ridiculous premise, this film would have immediately tanked, were it not for the Ms. Davis. Struggling valiantly with this turkey, Ms. Davis smokes, drinks, kills, and loves, as only Ms.
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3.0 out of 5 stars HIGH CAMP DAVIS Oct. 15 2001
Format:VHS Tape
Celebrated mystery writer Janet Frobisher (Davis) - who lives in a secluded mansion on the Yorkshire moors - is in love with Larry (Anthony Steele), a young engineer engaged to marry her secretary (Barbara Murray)..........It is fascinating watching Bette Davis, a superb screen actress if ever there was one, play everything in a blaze of breathtaking absurdity. The melodramatic gamut seldom has experienced the workout it is given in ANOTHER MAN'S POISON, a wild and fanciful saga where Davis, queen of the vixens, combs her hair, lights cartons of cigarettes, snaps her fingers and bites her consonants! No one has ever accused Davis of failing to rise to a good script; what this shows is how far she could go to meet a bad one. It's obvious that director Irving Rapper let Bette basically direct herself, for the same zealous overplaying isn't evident among the other cast members. Not to be missed by Davis fans! - it's safe to say that there are few things in the cinema quite like it. Based upon the play DEADLOCK by Leslie Sands, this little flick from 1952 was made in England and was, interestingly enough, produced by Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.
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2.0 out of 5 stars AU REVOIR... Feb. 6 2001
Presented by Image, the 1952 ANOTHER MAN'S POISON directed by Irving Rapper and starring Bette Davis is a British production that curiously enters the DVD market before the major movies of the american star. Adapted by Val Guest from a play, the action takes place most of the time in the mansion of Bette Davis who plays a mystery writer living in beautiful english landscapes. She loves horseriding so we have the opportunity to admire the country every 20 minutes or so. When she doesn't ride, she is smoking, drinking or plotting the death of the man who has replaced her husband ; by the way, she has killed her real husband in the first three minutes of the movie.
The screenplay of ANOTHER MAN'S POISON is one of the most ridiculous I have seen in months but who cares after all, we are here for the Bette Davis show. And I must admit that the show is worth a look, the great lady giving a lesson of acting during 90 minutes. Gary Merrill plays the false husband with conviction but doesn't have the slightest chance against Bette Davis.
No subtitles but an extensive filmography of Bette Davis as extra-feature. Average to above-average sound and images.
A DVD zone Bette Davis ultra-hard fans.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars ONE MAN'S MEAT.....
The statment, "One man's meat, is another man's poison" is so true and so ironic in this case. I was so intrigued by the mixed (and bad) comments that this movie got, that I had... Read more
Published on Dec 25 2007 by Madlyderanged_1
1.0 out of 5 stars DULL DAVIS? I'M AFRAID SO.....
Dreary Davis vehicle which should never have been made. She's a famous authoress living in England who murders an inconvenient ex-husband. Read more
Published on Oct. 29 2002 by Mark Norvell
1.0 out of 5 stars Bette is only the sweet thing in this poison.
To the point : There is no doubt that Bette Davis is the greatest actress in the world. She was at the right time and the right place, and above all she was talented. Read more
Published on Jan. 9 2002 by R. Tan
3.0 out of 5 stars Another Bette Davis Movie Video!
ok.. this film is not very good... it is minor film in the career of Miss Bette Davis. BUT.. it is a fun film to view... Read more
Published on Feb. 13 2000 by DANIEL FLECK
2.0 out of 5 stars Routine Thriller Recommended Only for Bette Fans
I'm happy that this movie has finally made it to video--I'd wanted to see it for years. However, the movie sounds more interesting than it actually is, and it is purely a routine... Read more
Published on Jan. 21 2000
Published on Jan. 21 2000 by DANIEL G. MADIGAN
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