Not being a Joan Crawford fan, I watched this film since it was produced by my favourite old movie studio, Warner Brothers. I have to admit that I was surprised by how good the film and Crawford were. It tells the story of how Crawford descends into madness when her lover, Van Heflin, spurns her and she cannot get past her love for him. She becomes obsessed with him (or should I say "possessed" with her love for him), despite marriage to her employer, Raymond Massey, and the growing relationship between Massey's daughter, Geraldine Brooks, and Heflin. Her increasing madness threatens to ruin the lives of everyone around her. The story is framed well, with a terrific opening of Crawford wandering the streets on the verge of catatonia, eventually relaying the events that led her to this point while under observation in a psychiatric ward. Crawford really delivers with this performance, apparently willing to forego some of the artificial glamour that I associate her with. It's a very effective performance of a woman on the edge. Heflin, Massey, and Brooks are also strong here. Director Curtis Bernhardt really establishes a dark mood, with some excellent shots and moments that establish Crawford's growing insanity. This is a top production that proves that Crawford could be an actress and not just a star.