Paradine Case [1947]

This minor 1948 film by Alfred Hitchcock beats a familiar Hitchcockian drum: an attorney (Gregory Peck), in love with the client (Alida Valli) he is defending on a murder charge, implicates himself in her guilt by trying to put the blame on another man. The no-one-is-innocent theme may be consistent with Hitchcock's best films and worldview, but this is one of the movies that got away from his crucial passion for the plastic side of creative directing. Stuck in a courtroom for much of the story, the film is fit to burst with possibility but is pinned down like a freshly caught butterfly in someone's airless collection. --Tom Keogh

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