January 2, 2017


Another Man’s Poison – 1951 | 90 mins | Crime, Drama | B&W

Plot Synopsis

Another Man's Poison

Bette Davis travelled to England with her then-husband Gary Merrill to star in this stagey crime melodrama adapted by Val Guest from Leslie Sands’ novel Deadlock. The film is directed by Irving Rapper, who directed some of Davis� most notable successes including The Corn Is Green and Now, Voyager. Despite the far-fetched plot, Davis produces a bravura performance of malevolent self-centredness and scenery-chewing histrionics. Anthony Steel is wasted in a light supporting role, whilst Emlyn Williams has some interesting moments as a persistent nosey neighbour.

Janet Preston (Bette Davis), a mystery novelist, is horrified when her estranged husband arrives at her windswept mansion in the Yorkshire moors after an absence of three-years. As she is already involved in an affair with her secretary’s fianc�, Larry (Anthony Steel), she poisons her husband. But before Mrs Preston can dispose of his body, a criminal accomplice, George Bates (Gary Merrill), comes calling demanding to see her husband.

Bates is a bankrobber on the run after shooting a policeman during a bungled raid. Janet confesses to having murdered her husband earlier that day, but rather than flee, Bates decides to stay and assume the identity of Mr Preston. Janet offers the crook money to leave and attempts to blackmail him, but Bates is adamant he is staying �for better or worse�. The biggest danger to the marital masquerade is the local busybody and vet, Dr. Henderson, a keen amateur psychologist who believes Bates is running away from something.

Production Team

Irving Rapper: Director
Cedric Dawe: Art Direction
Robert Krasker: Cinematography
Julie Harris: Costume Design
Gordon Hales: Film Editing
Nina Broe: Makeup Department
Freddie Williamson: Makeup Department
Paul Sawtell: Musical Composer
Leslie Sands: Novel
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.: Producer
Daniel M. Angel: Producer
Val Guest: Script
H.C. Pearson: Sound


Bette Davis: Janet Preston
Reginald Beckwith: Mr. Bigley
Barbara Murray: Chris Dale
Anthony Steel: Larry Stevens
Emlyn Williams: Dr. Henderson
Gary Merrill: George Bates

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