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Mental Illness: Major Films   no photo.
TitleCobweb, The (1955)
Alternative/Original Title
DisabilityMental psychiatry
CountryUSA
Length134
GenreDrama
Rating3
DirectorVincente Minnelli
CastRichard Widmark Lauren Bacall Charles Boyer Gloria Grahame Lillian Gish
NotesLife, as it was known in the 50s, in a psychiatric clinic where you strain to distinguish the staff and the patients. The madness of all rotates around a set of curtains. No puns please and I don't think it's spiders who are spinning them. ******************* This is a very strange film. It really is all about curtains. There is such a cast of patients and doctors the clinic must be in Hollywood. The doc (Widmark) is over worked at the clinic and has trouble at home with his wife (Grahame). The clinic is more like some informal health resort for the well-off. People move around aimlessly not as real mental patients often do but under the director's orders to make things look busy. One patient drifts by saying "I detest myself". Another rambles on about Caligula. A young man who probably fancies the doc's wife and is fancied by an insipid young woman says his troubles began when he started to fall apart following his mother's death. The young woman in question is "phobic" and has never been out of the clinic. The presence of Bacall is ominous. As the doc's marriage deflates so he and Bacall inflate.

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