Thursday, February 10, 2011

Angela Lansbury in A Life At Stake 1954

Our first film noir post this week featured Angela Lansbury, and here she is again playing another dangerous dame.

Keith Andes plays Edward Shaw, an architect who has lost his business in a deal gone bad. He's approached by an attorney who is looking for someone to partner with his clients (Lansbury and her husband) to take advantage of the post war building boom in Southern California. When he meets Doris Hillman (Lansbury) the sparks fly, and it looks like some pleasure will be mixed in with the business. The deal seems too good to be true - they'll pay off his debt and establish the new company with him with no upfront money from him at all. The only catch is they want to take out an insurance policy on him. This might not phase another man, but Mr. Shaw is nothing if not suspicious - of everyone. When more and more things start to point toward a scheme to murder him to collect on the insurance he starts to run scared. Look for veteran character actress Jane Darwell as Andes' landlady.
This film, like the others this week is available on the Hollywood Bombshells Collection DVD, and it's also uploaded in full to YouTube by sdfilmcritic. It's another one of those noir films that's gotten lost among the many available titles, so it's primarily unknown. The poster above is available at

Obscurity factor: 6 (available on DVD and YouTube, largely forgotten)

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