Dishonored Lady

 (165)
6.51 h 19 min1947UHDALL
Madeleine Damien is the fashion editor of a slick Manhattan magazine by day and a lively party girl by night. Unfortunately, the pressures of her job, including kowtowing to a hefty advertiser are driving her to a breakdown.
Directors
Robert Stevenson
Starring
Hedy LamarrDennis O'Keefe
Genres
Drama
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
English

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Producers
Jack ChertokHunt Stromberg
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Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

165 global ratings

  1. 48% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 22% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 15% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 5% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 10% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

R. BurgerReviewed in the United States on April 11, 2022
4.0 out of 5 stars
The quality of the DVD varies greatly with the studio
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The opinions posted here about picture quality are not helpful if they don't identify the particular studio release. This is a public domain movie flooded with versions of wildly different quality.

I bought the Reel Vault version from 2015 hoping it might be a more recent mastering. It was worth taking a flyer on a cheap used disc. It is a terrible quality video on a DVD-R. Unwatchable. Nice pretty cover though.

The 2002 release from Miracle Pictures has acceptable sound and very good picture. There are a couple
of discontinuities (bits of lost footage) but otherwise the production is close to major label standards.
One person found this helpful
S. T. PetersonReviewed in the United States on September 18, 2017
4.0 out of 5 stars
good one
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Fashion magazine editor in NYC is struggling with the rumors and guilt over her many flings by night with coworkers, clients, etc. She tries to commit suicide. And luck would have it that she is saved by a psychiatrist. He pin points her problem immediately. She scoffs as she is completely bitter and almost given up on life. He gives her his card and pleads with her that before she jumps off the Brooklyn Bridge that she give him a call. After another sexual encounter with a rich client--a millionaire French jewler, firing her secretary the next morning after overhearing the bets around the office placed on whether she slept with the client or not, and squashing a blackmail attempt by the office sleaze, she storms out finally. The psychiatrist finally succeeds in getting her to leave that life behind, change her name, and do what she really wants to do in life--paint. She finds temporary peace and true love in a young doctor staying in her tenant house on the wrong side of NYC working on research. You would think that with this being a black and white movie that they fall in love (they do) and ride off in the sunset (they don't). There is a murder. The heroine is framed for murder. They is much misery.

Good story. Great acting. Seemed almost like a black and white set in 2017. If it had crude and vulgar language along with nudity it would have been. But things were done differently back then. Subtle. For example, "Did you go home with Mr so and so and let him make love to you?" was how you know she was sleeping around. Anyway the actress I've heard of but never seen in the movies. Hedy Lamarr is great. Beautifully. The glamorous lifestyle is played up with nice homes, office, dress, etc. Nice looking leading man. It was all around a good movie as it was not formulaic or stock. It had some twists and turns to keep you awake. The subject matter is unlike anything I've ever heard back then. I would even say that the movie was about sex addiction in a way. The characters are people you can relate to. You can root for. Good people but flawed like us all. You get to the satisfaction of the persistent but ethical doctor. The movie is hard to watch in black and white as some of the scenes take place at night. But not that big of a deal. There is one funny scene that must have had to do with the crude editing back then. The man with hat on sees the Lamarr character to the door. There is a blip in the scene and he is standing there with hat off. Kinda insignificant but kinda funny though.
3 people found this helpful
JDReviewed in the United States on February 22, 2014
3.0 out of 5 stars
Distasteful to a Modern Palette
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I love classic films and I had never seen this film before and just finished a little while ago. I am a fan of Hedy Lamarr and wondered how I could have overlooked this movie. I'm glad I watched it but I had a hard time getting into it and couldn't really root for any of the characters.

Hedy plays Madeline, who is a professional woman who works with snarky men and women. She works at a magazine by day and is "party girl" (We never see her partying. She's visits a restaurant with a man and its implied she's visited restaurants with other men in the past. Shocking!) This movie was made during an era which was fairly uncomfortable with women in the workplace and Madeline is portrayed as a woman who is inwardly tortured by having had multiple lovers and being a professional woman. She finally snaps and begins seeing a (very controlling and frankly, unprofessional) psychologist. The psychologist helps her see the error of her ways and she realizes that she should quit her high paying job and live in squalor as an artist. She meets a "nice guy", a doctor, and begins dating him.

What follows is one of the most unrealistic courtroom scenes ever, and a highly choreographed fight scene (two men who've never been trained in martial arts who are nearing middle age should not be able to fight like that) and a make up which will eventually land the couple back in counseling.

The pace of the movie is very slow. I was playing Candy Crush and checking my emails and Instagram halfway through it. When I started paying attention again almost nothing had changed. They could have edited this movie down to 30 minutes and you still would have gotten the same information from the story.

Another reviewer mentioned that they use the phrase "make love" several times in the movie to imply sex. This is not so. In this time period and actually long before, the phase "make love" was used as another way of saying courting or dating. Making love to a woman meant that you were trying to make her love you, you were courting her, you were creating an atmosphere where love could grow. I don't think for a second that Madeline is a virgin, that's not what I'm saying at all. I think that by her inner pain we know she isn't a virgin. In fact, the psychologist mentions that Madeline has no respect for her body or herself. I think this also why she doesn't want to tell Dr. Cousins about her past. He wants to marry her and she doesn't want to tell him that he won't be marrying a virgin bride. We don't need the phase "make love" to tell us she isn't a virgin. She's a worldly woman who drinks and is seen in public with men she isn't directly related to. Of course she isn't!

What saves this movie is Hedy Lamarr's beauty, poise, and acting ability. She had a striking beauty and a lovely voice. She was a natural in front of the camera, you'd never know she was trying. Her reactions during the courtroom scene are believable, she isn't overly dramatic when she's freaking out, and she's even a believable drunk (though not as good as Bette Davis). If not for her, I'd give it only 1 star.
11 people found this helpful
azulchicaReviewed in the United States on January 22, 2014
4.0 out of 5 stars
Hedy Lamarr gives an honored performance in this Classic
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Hedy Lamarr with her Austrian accent plays a high powered art director for a magazine. She is sad or as one love interest put it has "shadows" in her eyes. She goes to a psychiatrist an all knowing, benevolent , patriarchal character who holds the answers she needs to get her life back on track. She decides to change her life completely and falls for a "good guy" but her wicked past will not let go of it' s hold on her. The supposition that psychiatry holds the answers is fascinating (did it in the 1940's?)

If you are a classic film lover do not miss this! It would be worth watching for Hedy Lamarr alone she is by far the most beautiful and underated actress of her time. The woman fighting her two selves one a sweet good girl in love with a doctor the other a party girl with no limits. as if it was a choice between good and evil is very interesting. It seems if you worked and were good at what you did then it was inevitable that you were exposed to immorality and bad men in the big evil world. If you are hard or rude the men will look over it because of your beauty. The culture and gender roles of the time are at once in your face as they spell it out but elude to the really racy things. They say make love with you a few times so we know this girl is fast and easy. I could envision the differences this film would have if it was done in 2014 but the story is a classic one and would work. The good men save her from herself in the end. She was married to John Loden at the time this movie was released (he plays Felix)
6 people found this helpful
SociologyReaderReviewed in the United States on October 4, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Good story; luminous Hedy Lamarr
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This is overall a good film to watch for classic film lovers. It centers on Hedy Lamarr's character and her efforts to remake herself. In the middle there is a psychologist, a sweet doctor, a mean-spirited mogul, a motherly and tough masseuse, etc. In other words, there are lots of characters and lots of events. While the story is interesting and moves quickly, the characters (aside from Lamarr) are all rather superficial and a little wooden.

Still, it is an entertaining story, worth watching for anyone who likes classic films, and surely a must-see for Hedy Lamarr fans. Also, there are some famous character actors, including Natalie Schafer (Ms. Howell of Gilligan's Island) and Margaret Hamilton (Wicked Witch of Wizard of Oz), that are fun to see.
One person found this helpful
Khristine JacksonReviewed in the United States on October 21, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
A Dueling Beauty ....with a dash of deception.
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The late Hedy Lamarr was absolutely ...gorgeous ! I began watching her movies more than 20 years ago.. When I first came out here in Hollywood ..I met a famous semi-retired producer who knew her .. They had been friends and she was nearing the end of her career at the time around the 1960's. Before that when I resided in Central Florida ..in the late 1990's during a break from the cabaret scene. I had met someone who knew her..when she lived in Casselberry,Florida before her death in 2000. I wish I would have pushed to have met her...when she died it was all in the national paper..and local press magazines. Yes she was laden with scandal ..and heart break.. A woman so beautiful was a skilled and gifted inventor who only befriended a few neighbor's and repairman . This movie was pretty good ..and they cast did a pretty good job. Rumor has it there may be a autobiographical film made about her life..? I would hope that they try to cast an actress from her native country of origin..? We shall see..??
FazshaReviewed in the United States on March 21, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Terrific film
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I'm a bit surprised at the whining about the print quality; it's not great, but it doesn't get in the way from my enjoyment of the film, which is considerable. It's the first Lamarr movie I've ever seen, and boy, what a revelation. Lamarr, in addition to her beauty, is quite the actress. In the beginning she plays the quintessential ice queen, but she melts on screen as she falls in love with Dennis O'Keefe as Dr. David Cousins. I was half hoping she would fall in love with her co-worker Jack Garet, played by William Lundigan, who is a revelation. Lundigan is not only more handsome than O'Keefe, he has more than a little bit of the same dashing cockiness Cary Grant possessed. Lundigan's voice is one of the best I've ever heard from an actor: deep, yet friendly and welcoming. His voice was used as the narrator in several of Warner Brothers Loony Tunes Cartoons. His MGM career, when they were grooming him to be their next leading man, was cruelly cut short in a fit of pique by Louie B. Mayer, who dumped his contract for having the audacity to be compelled by patriotism join the military to fight in WW2 when he had a medical exemption. The rest of his career, aside from this brilliant exception, was to be underused in scores of B pictures.

Scenes that are particularly enjoyable in this movie were Lamarr flirting with Felix Courtland, played by John Loder, a dashing European actor she was married to in real life. Their scenes sparkle with electricity, even though strangely they divorced at the same time as this film was made. Other scenes that were great was Lamarr flirting with Dr. Cousins at their first meeting, and her scenes in her office at the beginning of the movie. The movie moves along at a nice clip and the supporting cast is first rate.
18 people found this helpful
PhilReviewed in the United States on March 27, 2014
4.0 out of 5 stars
High Concept, Mediocre Directing, Slow But Not Stagnant Watch it for Hedy Lamarr
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This is difficult. The digital remaster is excellent, considering this film had fallen into the public domain and there are a lot of bad copies out there. The story is almost contemporary and tongue in cheek. A "modern" woman cracks under the stress of success and her "lifestyle" sending her back to simplicity. In essence almost a bit of cultural propaganda telling women to get back in the kitchen where they belong, but in this case, even that blows up. Hedy Lamarr is great, head and shoulders above her supporting cast, totally convincing as a high society "dame", not so much as the apron wearing apartment girl. I'm sure there are rave critical review out there for the directing, but this is pretty disjointed and appallingly slow, even for a noir psych/social commentary/semi thriller.

The film should get maybe 3 stars, the concept 5 especially for the time frame, and Hedy 4 just for showing up. If you're a B&W/Noir fan you should see this just because of the story line...get some coffee with your popcorn though because you almost have to slog your way through this one.
One person found this helpful
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