When a wealthy old man with a world-hating disposition needs a nurse, his nephew who hates him and for good reason makes sure that the nurse he gets is the one that the nephew wants. Mr. Connery (of course) has a plan.
Let me describe the wheelchair-bound uncle this way, using the nephew’s own words. He treats his servants [black] as dogs, and his dogs as servants. Nurse Maria resists the nephew’s plans for her at first, but 50 million dollars is very, very tempting. Nonetheless, her resistance — and eventually making him come to her, the uncle, that is, not her to him — is what eventually wins him over. And believe it or not, her charm not only works on the nephew, as it has all along, but the uncle’s behavior seems to take a turn for the better as well.
I’d have to agree that wealthy (and unlikeable) people being murdered by relatives for their money is old hat stuff in detective fiction, and maybe this is what turned the professional reviewers off. That and the fact that it takes a long time to develop the characters with very little happening. I didn’t mind it at all. Delicious! Sean Connery is super suave, Miss Lollabrigida is delectable with just a hint of naivete, and Ralph Richardson as an upper-crust man who’s unhappy with both life and wealth — it is a role he was born to play.
And when the expected event happens, it doesn’t happen the way I expected it to happen, and there’s no way I could have turned this movie off from that point on, no matter what. I was glued to the chair. Suspense? Yes, and I’m only sorry I can’t tell you more. —Mysteryfile.com
Basil Dearden (born Basil Clive Dear; 1 January 1911 – 23 March 1971) was an English film director.
Dearden was born at Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex. He graduated from theatre direction to film, working as an assistant to Basil Dean. He later changed his own name to Dearden to avoid confusion with his mentor.
He first began working as a director at Ealing Studios, co-directing comedy films with Will Hay, including The Goose Steps Out (1942) and My Learned Friend (1943). He worked on the influential chiller compendium Dead of Night (1945) and directed the linking narrative and the “Hearse Driver” segment. He also directed The Captive Heart starring Michael Redgrave, a 1946 British war drama, produced by Ealing Studios. The film was entered into the 1946 Cannes Film Festival. The Blue Lamp (1950), probably the most frequently shown of Dearden’s Ealing films, is a police drama which first introduced audiences to PC George Dixon, later resurrected for the long-running Dixon of… read more
Another very good Basil Dearden movie of the 60's. If you don't know Gina Lollobrigida, this crime story will make you understand why she was considered as Sophia Loren's challenger in terms of Italian sex-appeal. Ralph Richardson is despicable as an infirm millionaire and Sean Connery shot the film between two James Bonds. Highly recommended.