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JC as an auteur? Hahahahahahahahaha. From padded shoulders to a padded room.

I couldn't remember if I had seen this one before. Then when Van took Joan back to her employer's house

in his motor boat it started to click. Must have seen it a long time ago because I only remember a few parts

of the movie. Nice change of pace to see a big budget A picture with big stars and a longer running length,

though this baby went on a little too long for me. I could see Joan going around the bend for Cary Grant

or Ty Power, but Van Heflin. I like VH, but it's hard to see women going totally crazy over him, especially

in this flick playing a grade A heel with a slight booze problem. Then she ends up marrying Raymond

Massey, who has all the charisma of a leaf blower. It was fun watching Joan take a stab at going bonkers

and she does a pretty good job, but after awhile it gets a bit tiresome. I don't know much about Geraldine

Brooks' movie career, but she appeared in a lot of TV westerns back in the day. But after many mental

trials and tribulations, all's well that ends well. After shooting and killing Heflin, whose math calculation

came out terribly wrong, Joanie will spend a few years in an upscale nut house, helped along by Massey's

moneybags expenditures, and then return to civilian life. Nice work if you can get it.

We don't like to use the word insane Miss Smith. We much prefer the phrase as nutty as a fruitcake.

 

I didn't know JC toted around a suitcase full of vodka. I'd do that if only if I also had a suitcase full of

Kahlua and another full of bottles of cream. 

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1 hour ago, speedracer5 said:

Possessed is a movie that I actually own, but hadn't watched yet.  It came in a Joan Crawford box set that I have.  I really enjoyed it.  It was like a precursor to Fatal Attraction, minus the horrific bunny on the stove scene. 

Joan's character was bonkers, but also sympathetic.  Was she just that enamored with Van Heflin that she didn't want to take "no" for an answer? It seemed like the film tried to explain that Van's rejection of Joan triggered her psychosis, as if it were lying dormant, waiting to come out.  I wish we'd seen more of his relationship with Joan.  Did he lead her on only to reject her? Or was he just keeping things casual and she made the relationship more than it was? I know that he was the co-star of the film, so he couldn't do this, but I wish he'd stayed away from Joan.  Each time he re-surfaced, he re-ignited her obsession.  When he hooked up with Geraldine Brooks, I felt like he fully crossed into cad territory.  It was weird how she points out to him that they last met when she was 11, and then he's checking her out and wanting to go out with her.  But anyway, she was an adult, so I digress.  I think Geraldine was interested in him because he was an older man and had a bit of a mysterious aura around him.  With him though, I was thinking that he was perhaps a golddigger, and maybe liked the idea of having a young woman on his arm. Joan was a little long in the tooth for him if Geraldine is more his speed.

Anyway, I really liked this film.  I'm always a fan of the films that Joan made during the "woman in peril" part of her career and this film was no exception. 

Poor Joan is now seen as a "Mommie Dearest" caricature  with the big lips, the big eyebrows, the shoulder pads, all that.  But I think that Joan was actually a very attractive woman in the 1940s, more attractive than she was during her ingenue days. 

Really interesting observations about Possessed, speedy.  I like the comparison to Fatal Attraction,  very apt.

I too wondered if Joan's character was already  "bonkers",  or at least, had the potential to become so,  and that she was triggered by David's rejection of her.  I didn't find her as sympathetic a character as you did, though...at times, I actually found her a bit annoying.  I mean,  ok, I guess we're supposed to think she couldn't help it, she had some kind of latent mental illness,  but honestly,  people get dumped all the time.  Millions of women  (and men) have been rejected by someone they adore, it was ever thus.  And 90 per cent of them can handle it.   

I do agree,  we don't know whether Van Heflin's character had led her on...we only get that one scene between them, and Van breaks up with her before it's over.  On the other hand,  he certainly never leads her on after that.  He tells her as straight-forwardly and as kindly as he can, that he doesn't love her.   This is always news that is hard to take,  I would guess that most people at some point in their lives have experienced something similar.   And most people are upset,  heart-broken maybe...but they eventually suck it up and move on.   I found it a bit eye-rolling that Joan just couldn't and wouldn't do that.  Of course, as you suggest,  she may have been mentally unstable already and this rejection was just the event that set it off.

I don't agree with Vautrin that David was a "cad" -- as I said,  he seems pretty honest with her throughout the story.  I agree with you,  it didn't help Louise that he kept showing up again--  the best way to get over someone who's broken your heart is to never see them again.  And yes,  especially nowadays,  the age difference between David and Dean's daughter  (Carol)  does seem a bit creepy to a 2021 audience.  But we must remember that it was pretty common back then.

Getting back to what you speculated about whether David led Louise on:  Something that's very much implied in that scene in David's cottage, you know, where he's playing the piano and Joan's hanging around adoring him,  is that they've slept together, to put it bluntly, it seems clear they've had sex.  And maybe have been lovers like that for a while.  When I heard David say  "better get dressed",  I thought,  "wow,  they're being really open about what they've just done !"

But then I realized that you're supposed to think they've just been swimming,  and he means,  she should get changed out of her bathing suit and robe .  But I suspect this was just a way to signal to the viewer that she'd been undressed around him before,  and not just for swimming .

Anyway,  that hint of intimacy between them might partly explain why Joan was so heart-broken, and so shocked when she realized David didn't "feel that way" about her.  Back in 1947,  I'm guessing that it was a big deal for a woman like Louise,  a "respectable" woman ,  a nurse  (she was clearly not a "floozie" of any kind) to sleep with a man out of wedlock  (as they used to call it.)   So perhaps in her mind,  for David to have sex with her so casually was a kind of betrayal.  Of course in 1947 they couldn't be too direct about that kind of thing.

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What exactly did Eddie mean when he said "And when you look at Joan Crawford, Joan Crawford is looking back"

I'd be much more unsettled if it were Bette Davis.....(IN THIS OUR LIFE, BABY JANE, HUSH,HUSH SWEET CHARLOTTE, THE NANNY)

 

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Didn't care for Joanie's wardrobe in this movie.  Kinda **** in my opinion.  Very surprising.  I mean, after marrying Dean you'd think she'd have availed herself of some fashionable dresses but I suppose the psychosis got in the way....

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Well ol’ Joan gave me the creeps when she got ticked off and threatened both Van and the daughter saying basically “You better take me seriously and do what I say or ELSE!”  No idle threat there.  Scary.

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4 hours ago, Vautrin said:

I could see Joan going around the bend for Cary Grant

or Ty Power, but Van Heflin. I like VH, but it's hard to see women going totally crazy over him, especially

in this flick playing a grade A heel with a slight booze problem.

Yep, that's the thing that's also always stuck me about Mr. Heflin and ever since I first became aware of him back in '60s while watching old movies on TV . I'm talking about when he's playing the first male lead in a movie here, anyway.

Sure, he was a great actor and usually plays the more intelligent sort of man and usually the more than average "sensitive" sort too (in fact, I'd kind'a classify the guy as sort of an "American version of Leslie Howard" in this regard), but I've ALSO always thought him a rather odd looking man too with his large forehead and very average/everyman sort of features in general. And so, I'm with ya here on this point, Vautrin.

(...but hey then again, with you and I being men, have YOU ever been able to figure out what some women ever see in some of the guys they'll fall for?...well, I SURE haven't, anyway...nope, this suuuure can be a real mystery sometimes,  CAN'T IT?!!!)  ;)

LOL

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Btw, I can't WAIT for the ladies around here to now give me explanations to my above stated quandary!

Yeeeeah, this should be good.

LADIES?!!!

(...and no, I'm NOT doin' a Jerry Lewis impression here...I'm calling on ya...let's hear it...I'd REALLY like to know!)

LOL

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4 hours ago, Vautrin said:

I like VH, but it's hard to see women going totally crazy over him, especially in this flick playing a grade A heel with a slight booze problem

Crazy female isn't particularly discriminating. What we look like or have going for us at the moment doesn't seem to disqualify us, we get treated to boiled bunny soup or worse.

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39 minutes ago, Dargo said:

Yep, that's the thing that's also always stuck me about Mr. Heflin and ever since I first became aware of him back in '60s while watching old movies on TV . I'm talking about when he's playing the first male lead in a movie here, anyway.

Sure, he was a great actor and usually plays the more intelligent sort of man and usually the more than average "sensitive" sort too (in fact, I'd kind'a classify the guy as sort of an "American version of Leslie Howard" in this regard), but I've ALSO always thought him a rather odd looking man too with his large forehead and very average/everyman sort of features in general. And so, I'm with ya here on this point, Vautrin.

(...but hey then again, with you and I being men, have YOU ever been able to figure out what some women ever see in some of the guys they'll fall for?...well, I SURE haven't, anyway...nope, this suuuure can be a real mystery sometimes,  CAN'T IT?!!!)  ;)

LOL

I've always thought Van Heflin was pretty attractive.

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2 minutes ago, Moe Howard said:

Crazy female isn't particularly discriminating. What we look like or have going for us at the moment doesn't seem to disqualify us, we get treated to boiled bunny soup or worse.

Yeah sure Moe, in the case of THIS movie, this factor (Joan bein' a looney toon) might be a major factor in this, BUT once again, what's up with this whole "Van Heflin being irresistably attractive to women" thing in OTHER movies here, dude???

(...wait...I see MissW has just added somethin' in this thread here...maybe SHE'S just explained this all to me here?...be right back)

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10 minutes ago, misswonderly3 said:

I've always thought Van Heflin was pretty attractive.

Hmmm...okay then, but could you perhaps elaborate as to HOW or WHY???

'Cause like I said up there, I've never been able to figure this out in HIS case, OR like I ALSO said up there, why some women in general fall for the men that they do?!!!

(...Yours Inquisitively, Dargo)  ;)

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Okay, I'm back, and MissW was absolutely NO help at all here!

Nope, just gave me the ol' standard "I always found him pretty attractive" line.

(...HEY MissW, I'm lookin' for SPECIFICS here, lady...well, with a general "societal overview" here too, of course!!!)  ;)

LOL

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Well, let's see... it's not like one of those cases where the man is almost ugly, but has some kind of magnetism  (nobody would claim that Humphrey Bogart, for instance, was "ugly",  but he's certainly not "handsome" either...craggy looking? )  anyway, Van is handsome.  Maybe not Cary Grant level handsome,  but who is?  Van's handsome and yet kind of accessible looking at the same time.

Shirley you can think of some female stars with a similar quality?  

Also -  and maybe this is the crux of the biscuit -- he's intelligent looking.  And, as you yourself conceded above,  he  "usually plays the more intelligent sort of man". Exactly, intelligence is a very attractive quality.  Also, he usually played interesting characters who were both likable ( to a greater or lesser extent)  and decent.  (Ok, maybe David in "Possessed"  isn't very "decent"...  but he is clever and charming.)

Also, I like his voice.

Here's a pic of him in his prime.  Looks good to me:

Van Heflin

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28 minutes ago, Dargo said:

Yeah sure Moe, in the case of THIS movie, this factor (Joan bein' a looney toon) might be a major factor in this, BUT once again, what's up with this whole "Van Heflin being irresistably attractive to women" thing in OTHER movies here, dude???

(...wait...I see MissW has just added somethin' in this thread here...maybe SHE'S just explained this all to me here?...be right back)

Granted, in THIS case Joan is certifiable (complete with hallucinations) so her attraction to Van might be easily dismissed as such. 

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22 minutes ago, misswonderly3 said:

Well, let's see... it's not like one of those cases where the man is almost ugly, but has some kind of magnetism  (nobody would claim that Humphrey Bogart, for instance, was "ugly",  but he's certainly not "handsome" either...craggy looking? )  anyway, Van is handsome.  Maybe not Cary Grant level handsome,  but who is?  Van's handsome and yet kind of accessible looking at the same time.

Shirley you can think of some female stars with a similar quality?  

Also -  and maybe this is the crux of the biscuit -- he's intelligent looking.  And, as you yourself conceded above,  he  "usually plays the more intelligent sort of man". Exactly, intelligence is a very attractive quality.  Also, he usually played interesting characters who were both likable ( to a greater or lesser extent)  and decent.  (Ok, maybe David in "Possessed"  isn't very "decent"...  but he is clever and charming.)

Also, I like his voice.

Here's a pic of him in his prime.  Looks good to me:

Van Heflin

Okay, I suppose I can see your point here regarding Van. Yeah, a decent lookin' fellow he was, I suppose.

And btw, I thought his David character WAS "decent", and considering he WAS up front with ol' wacko Joanie from the very beginning, AND could see why he would become extremely frustrated with her over the course of the film. In fact, even when she showed up to see him in the scene where she plugged the poor guy, it seemed to me as if he was attempting to help her AGAIN to understand why they were never a good fit for each other and why "less-charisma-than-a-leafblower"Massey (good one btw, Vautrin) was who she was best suited for.

And now that we've gotten this whole "Heflin/attractive" thing settled, would you now like to offer up a suggestion as to that other thing I asked? YOU know, why some women inexplicably fall for the men that they do???

(...you DO know of course that I've been playin' "the Devil's Advocate" here in this regard, don't ya?!...and so, if ya wanna pass on that one, I can fully understand...and besides, this HAS always been a conundrum which the brightest of minds throughout the centuries have never been able to fully explain) ;)

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John Garfield -- the big ears were always a turn-off.  (however, I do find Clark Gable adorable as **** in SAN FRANCISCO)

Humphrey Bogart -- it would be scary waking up next to him.   One of my favorite actors but he looked like a ghoul

Robert Ryan -- creepy, beady-eyed, face like a Japanese demon mask.  I'd be terrified.

Robert Mitchum -- never thought he was attractive.  Something off-putting about that face, it always looked bloated

Dan Duryea -- I'm partial to blondes but don't care for lantern jaws

Steve Cochran -- Ugh.  Just ugh.  Nasty, sleazy, all-around repulsive

Robert Taylor -- No chin but pretty

Tyrone Power -- Strange dark marble eyes

Dick Powell -- looked like a hound dog which made him perfect in YOU NEVER CAN TELL

Dana Andrews --  I never thought he was sexy until just recently.  Don't ask me how or why 

 

 

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Dargo said:

And btw, I thought his David character WAS "decent", and considering he WAS up front with ol' wacko Joanie from the very beginning,

He was honest, or at least was trying to be, and she wasn't hearing it. It was the old 'the harder you push away, the more they want' thing. Maybe he was guilty of being a wee bit crass when addressing the situation, but I can't blame him.

I also don't have a problem with the younger girl friendship. There was nothing inappropriate going on there.

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4 minutes ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

John Garfield -- the big ears were always a turn-off.  (however, I do find Clark Gable adorable as **** in SAN FRANCISCO)

Humphrey Bogart -- it would be scary waking up next to him.   One of my favorite actors but he looked like a ghoul

Robert Ryan -- creepy, beady-eyed, face like a Japanese demon mask.  I'd be terrified.

Robert Mitchum -- never thought he was attractive.  Something off-putting about that face, it always looked bloated

Dan Duryea -- I'm partial to blondes but don't care for lantern jaws

Steve Cochran -- Ugh.  Just ugh.  Nasty, sleazy

Robert Taylor -- No chin but pretty

Tyrone Power -- Strange dark marble eyes

Dick Powell -- looked like a hound dog which made him perfect in YOU NEVER CAN TELL

 

Interesting takes on what your "turn-offs" are with these guys, Bronxie.

Except, I'm a bit confused here as to why in Duryea's case you said his "lantern jaw" (and which I've never felt he had, but prossessed more a longer and thinner face than average) was a turn-off, and yet you made it sound when you said you thought Robert Taylor had "no chin" (never really noticed this either) as also a turn-off for you but then said you still thought he was pretty? In other words, this seems a contradiction to me.

(...well anyway, I think I get your point here generally...maybe)

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6 hours ago, speedracer5 said:

Possessed is a movie that I actually own, but hadn't watched yet.  It came in a Joan Crawford box set that I have.  I really enjoyed it.  

Joan's character was bonkers, but also sympathetic.  Was she just that enamored with Van Heflin that she didn't want to take "no" for an answer? It seemed like the film tried to explain that Van's rejection of Joan triggered her psychosis, as if it were lying dormant, waiting to come out.  I wish we'd seen more of his relationship with Joan.  Did he lead her on only to reject her? Or was he just keeping things casual and she made the relationship more than it was? I know that he was the co-star of the film, so he couldn't do this, but I wish he'd stayed away from Joan.  Each time he re-surfaced, he re-ignited her obsession.  When he hooked up with Geraldine Brooks, I felt like he fully crossed into cad territory.

Anyway, I really liked this film.  I'm always a fan of the films that Joan made during the "woman Sin peril" part of her career and this film was no exception. 

Yes, I enjoyed POSSESSED a lot too. I knew going into that I'd seen at least some of it before, but as the movie progressed during this viewing I realized I had seen the entire movie before but had forgotten some of the details . *

For me, Van Heflin's character crossed into cad territory when  showed up at the wedding reception  for Joan Crawford and Raymond Massey's characters even though neither had invited  him.  He just came for the free food? Yeah,  right!  Jerk!   He knew how Crawford's character felt about him. (Yes, he's a fictitious character, but . . .)

I really like these movies from the middle period of Joan Crawford's career, especially POSSESSED, FLAMINGO ROAD and SUDDEN FEAR.

(I think I want to re-watch FLAMINGO ROAD now .)

 

* SPOILER:

***********************************************

For example, I remembered the part where  Joan Crawford's character pushed her step-daughter down the stairs but I had  forgotten that this was all in  Crawford's character's mind. 

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41 minutes ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

I've always thought Van moderately good-looking and even fairly sexy.  

I wouldn't turn him down.

 

19 minutes ago, Bronxgirl48 said:

John Garfield -- the big ears were always a turn-off.  (however, I do find Clark Gable adorable as **** in SAN FRANCISCO)

Humphrey Bogart -- it would be scary waking up next to him.   One of my favorite actors but he looked like a ghoul

Robert Ryan -- creepy, beady-eyed, face like a Japanese demon mask.  I'd be terrified.

Robert Mitchum -- never thought he was attractive.  Something off-putting about that face, it always looked bloated

Dan Duryea -- I'm partial to blondes but don't care for lantern jaws

Steve Cochran -- Ugh.  Just ugh.  Nasty, sleazy, all-around repulsive

Robert Taylor -- No chin but pretty

Tyrone Power -- Strange dark marble eyes

Dick Powell -- looked like a hound dog which made him perfect in YOU NEVER CAN TELL

Dana Andrews --  I never thought he was sexy until just recently.  Don't ask me how or why 

So. . . it's Van Heflin or Dana Andrews?

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Just now, HoldenIsHere said:

For me, Van Heflin's character crossed into cad territory when  showed up at the wedding reception  for Joan Crawford and Raymond Massey's characters even though neither had invited  him.  He just came for the free food? Yeah,  right!  Jerk!   He knew how Crawford's character felt about him. (Yes, he's a fictitious character, but . . .)

You got a solid point there.

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Richard Conte -- Big ears.   So, no go

Barry Sullivan -- Corpse-face.  Similiar to Bogart in this way

Lawrence Tierney -- good-looking but don't want to think about it for too long as I'd get the willies

David Brian -- overgrown kid face

Zachary Scott -- Bugs Bunny

Lloyd Nolan -- Ditto

Tom Conway -- Ah!  Much better looking than brother George Sanders

Robert Montgomery -- Baby face which made him perfect for NIGHT MUST FALL

Elisha Cook, Jr.  -- Pass

 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Moe Howard said:

He was honest, or at least was trying to be, and she wasn't hearing it. It was the old 'the harder you push away, they more they want' thing. Maybe he was guilty of being a wee bit crass when addressing the situation, but I can't blame him.

I also don't have a problem with the younger girl friendship. There was nothing inappropriate going on there.

Yep, considering she was a few years past the "legal age" (20), and as MissW mentioned earlier in this thread that a spread of 15 years wasn't an uncommon thing in relationships and especially back in the '40s, I agree with you.

(...and besides, Geraldine Brooks never came across in this film as "young and naive", either...in fact, maybe even a bit hardened and a bit sophisticated for her age in it, and expecially during that scene in which she meets Van in that nightclub and they begin to partake in a little witty repartee between them)

 

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