Night Has a Thousand Eyes Film Details
Overview: When phony stage mentalist Triton mysteriously acquires supernatural powers of precognition, he becomes frightened and abandons his act to live of anonymity.
Tagline: Never Have the Stars Looked Down on an Adventure Like This!
Review: File the case under “X”. In this rather well done film, Edward G. Robinson is one of those night club “mind readers” who tells the audience things about themselves with the help of an associate who plays clues at the piano. By the way, one of the customers that he stuns with his amazing but phony powers is a pretty young lady named Agnes. Agnes has only one line but she became the mother of Sally Field, the flying nun. Few people are aware of this portentous datum (outside the Field family) but I pass it on to you as an act of personal generosity. That will be fifteen cents. The first half is kind of interesting. Robinson is wheeling through his fakery when he’s interrupted by a sudden vision. He urgently sends an audience member home because her house is on fire. After the show his puzzled assistants ask what it was all about and Robinson dismisses it as a passing thought he’d had, and after all what difference does it make? Later they find that the house really WAS on fire and a child was barely saved. Robinson is troubled but his partners aren’t. Eventually he leaves the act, holes up for twenty years, and reappears in time to save a girl who might well have been his own daughter except for an act of self sacrifice. The girl is Gail Russell and she’s well worth saving. Russell was plucked out of a local high school because of her looks, hurriedly given a few acting lessons and thrust before the cameras. But she was self conscious and terrified of appearing in the movies, took to drinking to steady her nerves, wrecked her life, and died in her mid-30s, desolate. Any wrecked life is a misfortune but in her case it was a little more than that because she was almost infinitely appealing — not gorgeous by Hollywood standards, but, with her tentative girlish voice, her mane of curly black hair, and her pale blue eyes, she radiated a combination of vulnerability and sex appeal. In this film she winds up with John Lund, which may have been a milestone along her downward trajectory — or maybe the cause of it. Robinson turns in a competent and thoroughly professional performance as the showman who changes from a free-wheeling bankrupt into a man genuinely tormented by the possibility that he himself — through his visions — is somehow CAUSING the disasters he predicts. I’m not going through the plot because, if the first half is simple and neat, the second half has a loopy logic and turns into a high-budget Charlie Chan mystery. Well, I’ll give one example. Robinson has had a vision of Russell being murdered under the stars (the titular “thousand eyes”) at eleven o’clock at night. He’s taken seriously enough that the police have guards all around her mansion. She’s also attended by some skeptical business managers of her estate. The rooms are guarded, the doors locked, and all that. The tension increases as eleven o’clock approaches. At about fifteen minutes before eleven, a hand reaches slowly from behind a curtain and moves the time on the grandfather clock ahead by ten minutes. When the clock strikes eleven, everyone breathes a sigh of relief. Whew. It’s now past eleven and Russell still breathes. Of course the REAL eleven o’clock hasn’t yet got here. So when the relaxed Russell wanders out alone into the garden a few minutes later, she’s attacked by the murderer, who is a person of no significance whatever to the plot and who is just trying to stop a business deal from going through. Okay. So why did the murderer move the hands of the clock ahead? Why didn’t he wait until the REAL eleven o’clock had come and gone. After all, what the hell does HE care about what time he murders Russell? This is Charlie Chan territory. But I enjoyed it. The hint of the supernatural is always fascinating. As Robinson observes, we’ve all felt something similar at one time or another — we know who’s on the phone before we pick it up, or we enter a strange room and we’re certain we’ve been there before. And Robinson may be right about it. It was about twenty years ago that the American Association for the Advancement of Science finally added a Section H, covering paranormal phenomena. Who knows?
Country: United States
Duration: 81 min
Genre: Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller
Also known as: Night Has a Thousand Eyes,Natten har tusind øjne,I nyhta ehei hilia matia,A Noite Tem Mil Olhos,Yöllä on tuhat silmää,Die Nacht der tausend Augen,De nacht heeft duizend ogen,夜は千の眼を持つ,Die Nacht hat 1000 Augen,Die Nacht hat tausend Augen,Noc ima hiljadu ociju,Les yeux de la nuit,La notte ha mille occhi,Du stirbst um elf,Yöllä on 1000 silmää,Mil ojos tiene la noche,У ночи тысячи глаз,Natten har tusen ögon