Leave Her to Heaven

Director: John M. Stahl
Year Released: 1945
Rating: 3.0

Writer Richard Harland (Cornel Wilde) meets ravishing New Englander Ellen Berent (Gene Tierney) on a train to New Mexico, and it turns out they're going to the same exact location (she's planning on scattering her late Father's ashes) - as expected, they fall in love, marry and ... then her raging jealousy kicks into overdrive and people (born and unborn) begin disappearing.  The bright and vibrant cinematography by Leon Shamroy belies the dark heart of the project, which shows Tierney (in one of her best performances) staring holes through Wilde's face when not coldly letting his younger brother Danny (Darryl Hickman) - who has polio - drown in a lake ... and later purposely hurls herself down a set of stairs to "abort" her baby (if I had to diagnose her, I'd say her character has either borderline or histrionic personality disorder).  I sort of wish it didn't end with a courtroom scene - Ellen's jealous ex-boyfriend Russell (Vincent Price) grills Richard on the witness stand (what, no objections from the defense?) - but his consolation prize is the adorable Ruth (Jeanne Crain).  Here's something to remember: anytime a woman "compliments" you by saying you look like her Dad ... run.