6/4 Capsules

Picnic (1956, Joshua Logan)
Way too chaste to be effective “potboiler” (maybe a Kansas potboiler?) about ne’er-do-well William Holden (playing somewhat younger than his 37 years) coming to a small town to beg a job off college pal Cliff Robertson, only to get in between Robertson and his best gal, local restless beauty queen Kim Novak. Excellent supporting performances from Rosalind Russell, Arthur O’Connell, and Susan Strasberg. But Logan’s direction is painfully flat.
DVD, Streaming.
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The Woman in White (1948, Peter Godfrey)
Half a great Gothic about drawing instructor Gig Young starting work at an English manor instructing Eleanor Parker. He soon finds himself in embroiled in a mystery involving sinister (and phenomenal) Sydney Greenstreet, an escape mental patient, as well as a love triangle between Parker and her best friend, played by Alexis Smith. Extremely well-made and acted; too roughly changes protagonist from Young to Smith, with Young really suffering.
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