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TYRONE POWER & MARLENE DIETRICH IN 'WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION'

Ruta Lee & Tyrone Power WITNESS Rates: ***

While the often compared-to courtroom drama ANATOMY OF A MURDER is an existential courtroom drama about a man who's entirely guilty of murder, in WITNESS TO THE PROSECUTION it's obvious someone's not telling the truth. Either a horribly aged once-perfect-looking Tyrone Power (with a gorgeous trophy in the wings played by Ruta Lee, pictured)...

He's accused of killing a rich old lady befriended for need of a loan on an egg-beating invention (?), or the title character in Marlene Dietrich...

She gives the best performance overall, especially having to do with a twist that really only works in repose. Meanwhile, the always great acting team of Charles Laughton, as the flawed defense consul of the English Court, and real-life (contrived) wife Elsa Lanchester, are only pretty good here, going back and forth more like another kind of stage play. Comedy, perhaps. Which simply doesn't fit here, and with everything mounting to the last five minutes, like mysteries do, this isn't one for rewatching.  

Steamy image for WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION


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