A woman secretly suffering from kleptomania is hypnotized in an effort to cure her condition. Soon afterwards, she is found at the scene of a murder with no memory of how she got there and seemingly no way to prove her innocence.
An adventuresome young man goes off to find himself and loses his socialite fiancée in the process. But when he returns 10 years later, she will stop at nothing to get him back, even though she is already married.
In 1844, the Wells family lives in a small farm of their own in Greenwich, Connecticut and the sons and daughters have a rigid discipline and religious education from the patriarch Ephraim Wells. When his wife Abigail Wells receives a letter from her wealthy distant cousin Nicholas "Nick" Van Ryn inviting one of her daughters to live with his wife Johanna Van Ryn and him nursing their daughter Katrine Van Ryn, the naive Miranda Wells gets excited with the perspective of traveling. Her mother convinces Ephraim to let her go and Miranda travels with her father to New York. They meet Nick and they learn that he is a patroon of farmers at the Hudson Valley. Then Miranda travels to the Dragonwyck mansion where she is introduced to the voracious Johanna and the sweet Katrine and to the housekeeper Magda. Miranda also meets Dr. Jeff Turner, who is a sort of leader of the farmers that work for Nicholas, in a party and befriends him. Soon she notes that Katrine is neglected by her parents. ...Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The family name Schermerhorn, which is the subject of gossip at the ball at Dragonwyck is actually the name of writer Mankiewicz's ex-in-laws. See more »
As Miranda and Van Ryn dance through the doorway from the balcony into the ballroom, she holds her closed fan in her hand. When the shot changes after they enter the room, the fan dangles from her wrist. See more »
Nicholas Van Ryn:
You might as well be on your father's knee! Do you believe there is a God who spends eternity snooping on human behavior and punishing all violators of the pastors latest sermon?
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This is a rare case where the movie adaptation is more enjoyable than the novel it was based on. I liked Vincent Price immensely in this movie; he is creepy yet seductive, and I can readily imagine a young woman getting caught in his web without realizing the danger. He adds much more nuance and subtlety to the character of Van Ryn, who in the novel came across as just a scary guy to be avoided at all costs. I wish it would come out on video - it's definitely an enjoyable "rainy day" movie.
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