A brain surgeon gives a lecture on Criminality to a class. It involves the classic case of did she fall or was she pushed. James Mason co-produced the movie. Pamela Mason co-wrote the screenplay.
Dr.Michael Joyce (James Mason) is lecturing on what he calls the sane criminal. He tells the story of a successful doctor who ignores everything and everybody, including his wife, for his profession. Into his office come Emma Wright and her twelve year old daughter Ann. She has a brain injury which will cause her to become blind. Michael operates and it’s a success.
He and Emma get a lot closer. Turns out her geologist husband is away a lot and Michael’s wife Clara won’t give him a divorce. Emma writes a letter to her husband asking for a divorce. She can’t mail it. She and Michael break it off. They never see each other again.
Word comes to Michael that Emma fell through a window and broke her neck. He goes to the coroner’s inquest. Emma’s sister-in-law Kate Howard (Pamela Kellino) testifies that she had just left the house when it happened. Ann takes the stand and it looks like there was a signal from Kate to her. She backs up Kate’s testimony.
Michael decides to investigate. He goes to a hotel and crashes a cocktail party which Kate is attending. He takes her away from some tactless guests. Later on he goes to Emma’s house and breaks a window to get in. He goes to the room where it happened. While going back downstairs he starts playing the piano. Clay the caretaker comes in.
Clay realizes he’s not dealing with a burglar and they both have some tea. He tells Michael how much he and the other servants hated Kate. Michael romances her with a plan of vengeance in mind. He tricks her into waiting at the hotel for him while he goes to speak with Ann.
Kate is supposed to take over raising her and is sending her away to boarding school. Ann says Emma and Kate had an argument and she took her aunt Kate’s side. Emma rushed back to her room and that’s the last Ann ever saw her. She thinks it’s her fault her mother died.
Michael gets Kate to the same room and tells her to jump. She’s not going for that so he helps her out. End of lecture.
Michael meets his wife and drives her to her sister-in-law’s house. I won’t reveal the rest of it. Towards the end credibility is stretched but it’s still worth checking out.
Pamela is a highlight as the evil woman. She was married to James Mason in 1941 but still used her maiden name for this movie.