Screen legends Ingrid Bergman (Notorious) and Joseph Cotten (Citizen Kane) star in this spellbinding melodrama from the screen's Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock! Banished for murder to Australia, Sam Flusky (Cotton) takes his victim's troubled sister, Henrietta (Bergman), as his wife. The arrival of a new governor also brings Henrietta's old friend, Adare (Michael Wilding), who tries to help her conquer the demons plaguing her life. But something mysterious is afoot; is Henrietta going insane, or is there a sinister plot at work? A gripping, atmospheric yarn in the style of Rebecca and Gaslight, this sumptuous production features some of Hitchcock's most audacious visual tricks and is now presented on DVD in a rich new Technicolor digital transfer!
With the long-take experiment of Rope still fresh in his mind, Alfred Hitchcock turned his attention to romantic melodrama: Under Capricorn, a novel of 1830s Australia. Having little of the usual suspense to rely on, Hitchcock used the elegant long-take method to draw out Ingrid Bergman's harrowing performance. As a fallen aristocrat who married a former stable boy (Joseph Cotten) and moved Down Under, Bergman gives a fine portrayal of a woman hemmed in by a sour marriage and a guilty secret. The actress also felt hemmed in by Hitch's elaborate camera movements; she hated them. This expensive picture flopped on its first release, but it has a hypnotic flow despite a tendency toward talkiness. Hitchcock fans will recognize, beyond the details of plot, a couple of the director's key motifs: the jaundiced view of marriage, and the anxieties underlying social status. And, of course, the worship of an actress. --Robert Horton