Twilight Women (1952)

June 18th, 2023
Author: Meredith Taylor

Dir: Gordon Parry | Cast: Freda Jackson, Rene Ray, Lois Maxwell, Laurence Harvey | UK Crime Drama 89’

Unmarried nightclub singer, Vivanne Bruce, is suddenly along when her lover, Jerry Nolan, is arrested for murder. Searching for a place to live she eventually finds a room in a boarding-house run by the ruthless “Nellie” Alistair, who has an ulterior motive for offering unmarried mothers bed and board.

Britain’s first ‘X’ feature was this unrelenting slice of life with photography and production design that makes it resemble a silent German kammerspiele in which the unwed mothers of the title are first introduced in a series of close ups that resemble a series of mugshots.

The men are hardly seen (where was Maxwell Reed on the day they shot it?) with the egregious exception of Laurence Harvey, first seen as a crooner (obviously dubbed) in a nightclub.

Freda Jackson reprises her baby-farmer from No Room at the Inn, again answering to the appellation ‘Mrs’ although we never actually see her husband. @RichardChatten


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