How much did you love to hate Anne Baxter in 1950’s All About Eve? Want to see her practice for the role in 1944?
This Sunday, #BNoirDetour offers a #Noirvember opportunity to enjoy Baxter at her evil best, six years before she’d tangle with Bette Davis.
In 1944’s Guest in the House, Baxter plays Evelyn Heath, a young, apparently frail woman who is engaged to her doctor, Dan Proctor (Scott McKay). To convalesce, Dr. Dan brings her to stay with his artist older brother Douglas (Ralph Bellamy), wife Ann (Ruth Warrick), their daughter, and Aunt Martha (Aline McMahon). Evelyn turns the sweetness up to 11, delighting in meeting the whole quaint family, who welcome her with open arms…though Martha is suspicious.
When the good doctor has to return to the city and his practice, life is soon turned upside-down as Evelyn shows her high maintenance side along with her paranoiac fear of birds. But a little pampering is not enough for her and she turns her attention to ridding the house of Douglas’s model Miriam (Marie McDonald) and then sets her sights even higher.
It’s a delight to watch Baxter’s Evelyn work her malicious neurotic magic over the household as we wonder whether Douglas, played with usual kind but naive charm by Bellamy, will fall prey to her wiles. Will she ruin the lives of the Proctor family, or will they save themselves in time?
Join us on Sunday, 11/15 at 9pm ET to find out!
Fabulous fun fact: when rereleased, the film got a new, wickedly over-the-top title: