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on July 3, 2016
Bette Davis Excellence

Visually stunning; the coastal setting, clouds and New England architecture. Most significantly the costume design and fitting for Ms. Davis. She is subtle in her depiction of the twins but a tenderness and intelligence in her performance that seduces me to watch this again. The supporting cast is also excellent and every facet of this film holds up to the hollywood ending.
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on March 23, 2011
I had been hoping for a DVD release of "A Stolen Life" for quite some time so was delighted when I saw this release.
The movie is about two sisters, one selfish and frivolous "Patricia" the other more reserved and Kind "Kate".
Enter Glenn Ford at his most handsome.This movie was released the same year as "Gilda" with Glenn aside Rita Hayworth, it was hugely successful so he was a hot commodity at this time as well as the always In Demand Davis
The good Bette falls for Ford's character and the bad Bette steals him away and they marry..Years later there is a sail boating accident in which the two sisters are on board leaving the The selfish Patricia dead and her wedding ring slips off as Kate is trying to save her.Kate plays it off like she is "Bill" Glenn Ford's wife,but all things are not good in the Paradise that Patricia had made of the marriage unbeknown to Kate.It plays out into an endearing and exciting love story.Think Dead Ringer meets No man Of Her own. One of my Favorite Davis Films,but then again I love them all.
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on November 5, 2016
Pretty good film--suspenseful and it's Bette Davis--and the script is solid if not stunning. But my question is, and it's not rhetorical, I'm really trying for inter-active reviews so do let me know cause I'm far from the Wizard on the Mountain on classic films--I just really like them a lot. Anyway how many films did Bette Davis do where she played twins or sisters or just two or more parts for the hell of it? Now I'm assuming she didn't do it more than Peter Sellers did, but I would like to know, and when counting her movie roles (you know for Guinness Book of Records Reasons--does she get credit for two roles even if it's the same movie. Could she have been nominated for one twin but not the other? Certainly one of the performances could be better than the other. Now I'm not counting performances like Marlene Dietrich in "Witness for the Prosecution" cause she's playing a character who's playing two parts (can't say any more or I'd have to add 'Spoiler Alert'--though if you're over 15 and haven't seen "Witness for the Prosecution" my question (this time it is rhetorical) Why the Hell Not? I think this same rule of thumb would apply to Joanne Woodward in "The Three Faces of Eve"--I mean she won the academy award--but only one--But maybe she should have been nominated for all three faces--but then she probably would have split her own vote and wouldn't have even won, which she probably deserved, though I don't know who else was nominated that year or even what year it was.) But anyway getting back to "A Stolen Life" Davis gives two fine performances (or is it really just one?--whadda you think? Oh in keeping with this theme please see "Sleuth"--and I'm not gonna say another word about that film because, well, you know--Just see it. In fact you should see all the films I've mentioned in this hopefully Inter-active review--but "A Stolen Life" is probably the least well known and it's definitely worth the double look.
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on April 9, 2016
First time I've seen this but thoroughly enjoyed it. Thought it was a little slow at first but it kept my interest. I don't want to spoil anything, but hated the selfish sister and had sympathy for the other. Loved the ending.
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on August 4, 2012
I wish now that I'd spent the extra money the first time and gotten the DVD of this movie as the VHS version is very poor. It is very dark all the way through and appears to have had very little or no restoration at all. It's a good story and, of course, Bette Davis can't give a bad performance. And we get two for the price of one - good Bette and bad Bette - can't beat that. I disagree with some reviewers comments about Glenn Ford. I think he is perfect in this role and did a very good job with the little he was given to do. He was very believable. For anyone thinking of ordering this movie, go ahead and get the DVD. I finally got the DVD and it is much better quality than the VHS tape. I love this movie though, in all honesty, I have to agree with another viewer that the ending is a bit hard to accept. Didn't answer the question - are they going to go on pretending that she is his real wife who was an A grade bitch who apparently had numerous affairs or do they admit the truth and get married. Seemed like an "I don't know how to end this" type of ending to me. But, the rest of it was so great that I didn't really care. One question I've had about many of Bette Davis films. Why didn't they put a really good bra on her instead of letting her boobs hang down nearly to her waist especially when she got a little older. In almost all the scenes as Kate, she just looks dumpy with clothes most unbecoming to her. Was that to make it seem like there is a big difference in the two sisters?
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on November 6, 2013
If you can ignore the wild implausibility of the plot line, (who could ever expect to step into their dead twin sister's life and marriage, without knowing anything of said siblings relationships?) then "A Stolen Life' is great fun. Anyone who enjoys watching Bette Davis is bound to love watching TWO of her at once in many scenes, and the split screen effects are very impressive--often showing one character crossing behind or in front of the other, or reaching into the other one's side of the frame. Even today this would be considered impressive effects work.

The story is a bit exasperating, in that the Glen Ford character openly ditches kindly Kate--with whom he has started a romance--for the obviously wicked sister Pat, while Kate remains inexplicably in love with this ne'er do well who has jilted her. On top of that, she remains civil to the sister who stole him out of her arms.

When Pat dies in a boating accident and Kate decides to step in to Pat's life and marriage--effectively "killing herself" by pretending to be the dead sister, things get predictably difficult for her as she finds she cannot bluff her way. On top of that, Patricia has been a very bad girl, so Kate is in fact inheriting a you-know-what storm. (This plot was essentially cloned two decades later for another Davis film "Dead Ringer" with equally head-scratching plot contrivances).

Why, for example, once Kate finds out that Glen Ford hates his new wife, does she not simply admit she's Kate after all? It's not like she'll go to jail! Unlike in "Dead Ringer", she hasn't killed her sister, so why not just tell the truth rather than live out the consequences of Pat's bad karma?

On top of that, she martyrishly buddies up with an obnoxious "artist" that does nothing but insult her and call her names (all while accepting her financial help for supplies and a place to work) to the point where one is ready to wonder if watching Pat be a bad girl for 90 minutes might not have been more enjoyable than watching Kate be a good one.

However, it all wraps up strongly enough that by the end, you've been well-enough entertained and amused to feel you've gotten your money's worth.
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on May 15, 2017
Expected more...not the "sensational" story as promised. It's the story that lacks...certainly not Bette Davis's performance in both roles. The other "twin" tale starring Mz. Davis, "Dead RInger" is better by far!!!
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on May 24, 2016
I loved this movie, the plot and acting was wonderful and Bette's acting was so good that I watched it twice the day I received the movie. I loved the way Bette Used the bottle with the ship in it to be able to get to the lighthouse so she could see Glenn Ford. This movie grips you with the twins, Pat and Kate, both played by Bette Davis, and Bette showed her brilliant acting playing two very different roles. A wonderful movie.
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on April 23, 2017
Love this movie
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on August 29, 2015
Fascinating 'twin' lead role, brilliantly carried by the 'one and only' Bette Davis. Cinematography required to carry off this 'special effect' proved to be outstanding, beautifully showcasing Davis' skill in performance. Walter Brennan's crusty lighthouse keeper was perfect, while portrayals of other male characters seemed weak. All in all, a worthwhile film, made even more enjoyable by its delightful setting on the New England coastline.
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