A serial killer terrorizes london trapping his prey through personal ads in the newspapers and taunting the police with gruesome poems. Scotland yard is brought in to solve the case. Studio: Kino International Release Da... more »te: 05/23/2000 Starring: Lucille Ball George Sanders Run time: 103 minutes Director: Douglas Sirk« less
Michael Puckett | Little Rock, AR United States | 01/12/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In 1947 Lucille Ball didn't have a studio home from which to make movies. She had just left MGM due to the lackluster treatment she had been subjected to during her stay there. So during this period of her film career she was forced to freelance in order to keep working. The lack of studio influence on who and what she played allowed her the rare opportunity to play way out of character from her standard movie roles which had been dominated by chorus girls and wise-cracking, hard-nosed secretaries. First she starred opposite Mark Stevens in the little know film noir classic "The Dark Corner" and after recieving excellent reviews was given the lead role in "Lured" a Douglas Sirk directed murder mystery. The top-notch cast including Boris Karloff, Cedric Hardwick, George Sanders and George Zucco are all excellent in supporting roles but make no mistake about it "Lured" is arguably the best film of Lucille Ball's movie career. It's the story of a stranded American Taxi Dancer in London who helps Scotland Yard trap a serial killer who lures his victims through the personal columns. The movie features intricate plot twists, great atmospheric sets, beautiful gowns and enough red herrings to satisfy the most avid murder mystery buffs. Finally, it is a real joy to see Lucille Ball in a quality film with a real dramatic character to play, acting like she should have been given these kinds of good roles all along. I highly recommend this gem."
LUCY & NOIR= GOOD THRILLER
Mark Norvell | HOUSTON | 09/17/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Fans of Lucy will be surprised to see her in this "re-discovered" thriller as I was. I knew she had done one film noir in 1946-"The Dark Corner" where she played a private dick's secretary. She was good in it, playing it straight. But this one I had read about but it was so obscure (not even turning up on TV) that I figured I'd probably never see it. I had also read that she didn't like this film because it was so morbid. Kino has resurrected it on video then DVD and it's wonderful. Not really morbid (maybe to her it was) but it is a serial killer tale set in foggy London and she is a tough, been-around American showgirl stranded there when her show folds. While working as a taxi-dancer, her roommate disappears and is later found to have fallen prey to a madman who lures pretty girls to their deaths through the personals and then sends Scotland Yard twisted clues based on morbid poetry. Ball is excellent as the detectives use her as a decoy to trap the killer and the cast features Boris Karloff as a mad clothes designer(!) who tries to use her to model his designs for his "critics"---actually an empty room save for his dogs. Karloff is one of many strange characters she encounters answering the personals looking for the killer...great cast all around. Lucy is just wonderful."
"Scotland Yard's most delectable decoy!"
Dave | Tennessee United States | 06/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This "rediscovered" classic from 1947 has one of Lucille Ball's best dramatic roles of her career. She stars as Sandra Carpenter, a feisty American dancer struggling to earn a living in London. However, a Jack-the-Ripper-like serial killer is looking for and murdering beautiful young women, and Sandra's friend is the killer's latest victim. Wanting desperately to help the police find the brutal murderer, she is hired by Scotland Yard to become a decoy for the killer, who lures his victims through newspaper advertisements. Thus, Sandra is compelled to check on every single advertisement requesting young beautiful women, and goes from one weirdo to another in search of the serial killer.
She is closely watched and followed by Officer H. R. Barrett (George Zucco) who is ordered to protect her from danger, and she periodically reports to Inspector Harley Temple (Charles Coburn) at Scotland Yard headquarters. In her search for the killer she meets a mentally unstable painter, Charles van Drute(Boris Karloff), as well as a charming playboy, Robert Fleming(George Sanders), who admits to being a cad. For a long time Robert tries in vain to earn Sandra's trust. Over time, however, Robert wins both Sandra's trust and love and they make plans to leave the country and marry. Eventually, the evidence is found that points to the killer, but nothing is at it seems in this well-crafted noirish mystery.
Like a previous reviewer I am puzzled by the photo of Boris Karloff on the dvd cover, as he is in the film for just a few minutes. George Sanders and Lucille Ball are simply fantastic together, and even when I figured out who the killer was (relatively early in the film) I still enjoyed wayching it very much. The KINO dvd seems way overpriced to me, however. There are no bonus features at all (unless you count scene selection). The picture quality is great, but the sound (at least on my dvd player) was horrible. I had to turn the tv volume up very high and I still couldn't hear all the dialogue. So although the film is a great classic, you should skip the dvd (maybe the vhs version has better sound) until a better quality version is available."
Lucille Ball is a delightful sleuth!
Concerned About Movies | SC, USA | 06/27/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Douglas Sirk, that magnificent master of melodrama, directed this delightful gem of a mystery almost 10 years before directing the films that would become his legacy: "Magnificent Obsession", "All that Heaven Allows", "Written on the Wind", and "Imitation of Life". But right from the beginning of "Lured" you know that you are in the hands of a major director. Each frame is composed with the eye of an artist; the suspense is carefully built and maintained; and the atmosphere is sophisticated yet full of foreboding. In fact, if you showed this movie to a beginning student of cinema, I don't think it would take much to persuade them that they were watching a film directed by Alfred Hitchcock.The experienced cast is a delight to watch with George Sanders as a charming, debonair cad (as usual); Charles Coburn as the methodical but fatherly detective (a bit of miscasting there, but he pulls it off); and Lucille Ball as the shrewd, captivating heroine of our tale in one of her non-comedic roles. I enjoyed watching everyone, including Boris Karloff who plays the odd part of an insane haute couture designer to the hilt, although he is on the screen for only about 10 minutes. (Why, pray tell, is Karloff's photo on the cover of the DVD, when his role in the movie is such a minor one?) Only Sir Cedric Hardwick appears to be dispassionately walking through his part, although the story's denouement may explain why.The print of the film is sharp and crisp for the most part, although a few short scenes appear to have been taken from an inferior source and contain some distracting artifacts. The sound varies from reel to reel, but is generally good and always acceptable. Overall, this is a fine print of an engaging film, and especially interesting because of Lucille Ball who successfully (I think) pulls off a dramatic role with balance and assurance."
Marvelous Rediscovered Noir
Randy Buck | Brooklyn, NY USA | 02/11/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Fans of Lucille Ball or director Douglas Sirk are in for a treat with this one. Interesting use of genre conventions in plot (even after you've guessed the killer, still fun), nice cinematography which comes up beautifully in Kino's DVD transfer. Excellent supporting cast, with such stalwarts as Cedric Hardwick and Charles Coburn providing pleasurable backup to star turns from George Sanders and Ball. Nice to see how many subtle small touches Lucy brings to her characterization, and she looks ravishing, even in black and white. LURED is a great Saturday night popcorn movie!"