Legendary Joan Crawford

Home | Films | Biography | Photos | Ask Casey | Radio Days | Joan A to Z | Lucille Le Sueur Name Contest | Joan's Homes | Letters | Collecting Joan | Boutique | Links | News | About Me / Fans


"Don't let anyone tell you it's easy to play a madwomen, particularly a psychotic."
~Joan Crawford on her role in "Possessed."


"Possessed" 1947

Cast: Joan Crawford~Van Heflin~Raymond Massey~Geraldine Brooks~Stanley Ridges~John Ridgely~Moroni Olsen~Erskine Sanford~Gerald Perreau~Isabel Withers~Lisa Golm~Douglas Kennedy~Monte Blue~Don McGuire~Rory Mallinson~Clifton Young~Griff Barnett.

Director: Curtis Bernhardt

Producer: Jerry Wald

Costumes by Adrian

Box Office Figures for "Possessed":

Top Grossing Film Position: #59 out of #75

Gross Rentals: $2,300,000.

If you have seen this movie, please write a review below. Once your review is submitted, I will post the review below. Thank you for your review on this film.

Your Email Address:
How many stars would you give this film? Four being the best.
Your review/thoughts on "Possessed":


Reviewer: joanloverforever@yahoo.com

Stars: ****

Review: Quite possibly Joan's finest hour. Van Heflin's character doesn't really get much done in this movie and actually gets his ass shot off for his troubles, but he does get Joan Crawford to disintegrate beautifully from a healthy, emotionally needy nurse to a deranged rich dame that imagines things and suffers from enormous mood swings. If it's one thing we all know, it's that crazy people can be extremely entertaining, but be extremely cautious if you decide to tell them to leave you alone! And Joanie delivers in this department in this movie, big time! The plot has some troubles, though - and implausible incidents frequently occur. Everything starts with with a very wan-looking Louise wandering around town looking for David. She stops random men on the street and thinks they are this David guy and eventually passes out on a diner. She gets hauled off to a mental hospital and the doctors shoot her up with some magic truth serum, and the flashback-driven plot is set in motion. Back in the past David finally told her to get a life of her own so she went back to being a nurse to this nasty rich hag and it just so happens that this woman's husband knows David. This is how David gets hooked up with this tour of duty in The Great White North leaving Louise and her mean old patient. But the patient isn't mean for long and before you know it, they're pulling her out of a lake, and the police decides it was suicide. Louise eventually marries the widower (even if she doesn't love him) and gets the misguided notion that she killed that rich bitch. She had her day off at the time when his wife departured from life as we know it, so her husband knows she's innocent. Louise is relieved to hear this and they take a trip back to the home where the first wife suicided so that they can relax and so that Louise's stress levels can go down. Sounds like that's exactly what she needs! Louise of course never gets better(crazy people never do, you know) and things play out to their tragic conclusion. Joan does a terrific job in this movie. She is able to move convincingly along the spectrum of emotions and actions that someone who is going crazy might have to endure. Sometimes she seemsfine, sometimes angry, sometimes inconsolably sad, and sometimes all three of these things within moments of each other. The movie's message is clear, if mental illness is not treated, you(or in this case, David) are in dire straits. Them crazy folks'll kill you if you leave them to their own devices! Joanie really shines in this part and is believable in all of her transitions throughout the entire picture. 4 out of 4 stars, easy!


Reviewer: babyc22_5

Stars: 4 stars

Review: I think that it must have been quite hard to play someone whose kinda insane, when your not it real life. A very good movie. If I was like Louise, I would be kinda freaked out a little after the therapy. When you look back at what you where like and plus Joan's big lovely eyes help her more than any other actress trying to play that part eg: Marilyn Monroe, maybe Bette Davis also could of played that part but I think Joan was the best choice.


Reviewer: writerdonna7

Stars: Four

"Possessed" begins with a pale, disoriented woman (Joan Crawford) in a plain, but impeccably cut black dress, wandering the streets of Los Angeles, murmuring the name "David." This is film noir and the wonderful angles and black and white cinematography, the German expressionism, all lend to the off kilter feeling of the story which describes Crawford's mental state. The woman winds up in a hospital where her story emerges through flashbacks.

Apparently Louise Howell (Crawford) was having an affair with bachelor David Sutton (Van Heflin), but although Howell is becoming increasingly fervently attached, Sutton is ready to cut the cord. This rejection sends Howell over the edge. As she races back from his cottage by the sea, we learn that she is a private nurse for the ill wife of wealthy Dean Graham (Raymond Massey) and that the delusional Mrs. Graham believes Nurse Howell is having an affair with her husband. When Mrs. Graham is found drowned in an apparent suicide, Mr. Graham ultimately makes known his growing love for Nurse Howell and begs her to marry him. Howell's heart lies elsewhere, but he convinces her to give the marriage a go. Initially Graham's daughter Carol (Geraldine Brooks) rejects Howell, believing her responsible for her mother's death although Howell insists that Mrs. Graham was "more ill" than Carol realized. (Wonderful touch since Howell is "more ill" than she realizes). Eventually Carol accepts Howell, but the plot thickens when Carol begins a relationship with Sutton which becomes serious and threatens Howell's sanity.

Joan Crawford gives a powerhouse performance in "Possessed," making her emotional state palpable and sympathetic, and is aided by a truly crackerjack script with intricate twists, turns and ironies. Both Howell and Sutton are self-absorbed characters and are matched wonderfully in this drama. Brooks as Carol also has a fascinating duality to her personality like Ann Blyth in "Mildred Pierce," able to appear sweet and almost powerfully viperish as the plot demands. At times, like Howell, it's impossible to discern what is real and what is delusional as the drama enfolds. There is a bit of Freudian psychobabble in the hospital scenes, but Freudian analysis had exploded in the 1940's.

One note. DON'T READ FURTHER if you haven't seen the film. I hated David. He deserved to die. When he starts mocking Louise when she pulls out that gun and she fires after enduring his callous humiliation and cocky disregard throughout most of the film (okay, so she was as unstable as the Andreas fault, but he could've been a little less nasty), it was a victory for anyone who has ever been cast aside in a love affair. Didn't think she'd do it, did ya, David? Well, Joan Crawford doesn't take things lying down!




Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include;

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors.

joan crawford picture joan crawford mommie dearest joan crawford biography joan crawford movie bio

<!--Begin SiteStats Code Dec , 38--><STYLE>.ivanC11654435781495{position:absolute;visibility:hidden;}</STYLE><DIV CLASS=ivanC11654435781495 ID=ivanI11654435781495><A HREF=http://freestats.com CLASS=ivanL_FR TARGET=_blank>FREE hit counter and Internet traffic statistics from freestats.com</A></DIV><script language='JavaScript' src='http://joancrawford.freestats.com/cgi-bin/sitestats.gif/script/11654435781495'></script><noscript><a href='http://joancrawford.freestats.com/cgi-bin/sitestats.gif/map'><img src='http://joancrawford.freestats.com/cgi-bin/sitestats.gif/img' border=0></a></noscript><!--End SiteStats Code-->


Page Content

<!-- Start of StatCounter Code -->
<script type="text/javascript">
var sc_project=2846823;
var sc_invisible=0;
var sc_partition=29;
var sc_security="e6c0de95";

<script type="text/javascript" src="http://www.statcounter.com/counter/counter_xhtml.js"></script><noscript><div class="statcounter"><a class="statcounter" href="http://www.statcounter.com/"><img class="statcounter" src="http://c30.statcounter.com/2846823/0/e6c0de95/0/" alt="counter create hit" /></a></div></noscript>
<!-- End of StatCounter Code -->