A charming, smooth-talking gambler calling himself Chris Hale (Joseph Cotten) arrives in Ashton, home of the Corelli shoe factory. Claiming to have lived there as a boy, he soon ingratiates himself with the townspeople… including attractive heiress Elaine Corelli (Alida Valli), wheelchair-bound since a recent accident. Chris, hoping to leave crime behind, seems to have excellent prospects; but of course, his past catches up with him. —IMDb
Director Robert (Bob) Stevenson’s unusual knack for blending fantasy with credibility made anything seem possible in Disney live-action motion pictures from flying Volkswagens to levitating nannies, leprechauns to flubber. During the 1960s, the unpretentious craftsman directed nearly all of Disney’s successful films, including the Academy Award-winning “Mary Poppins” in 1964.
The believable fantasy elements found in many of his motion pictures have been a source of inspiration for other filmmakers, as well. Stanley Kubrick was said to have seen “Mary Poppins” three times while prepping “2001: A Space Odyssey.”
Bob once explained the secret of his success, “When I’m directing a picture, what I have in mind is a happy audience, enjoying it in a movie house.”
Former Disney Producer and fellow Legend Bill Walsh credited the director’s keen sense of vision and attention to detail. He once said, “With Bob, you were always sure when the film finished that you had everything… read more
Alida Valli and Joseph Cotten have incredible chemistry in this. The major flaw that keeps it from being a five-star film is the turn in tone from sentimental romance to action noir, complete with car chase and teary-eyed jail farewell. Still, one of the best early examples of a disabled woman as a lead character in a romance.