The Three Faces of Eve

"Good"

The Three Faces of Eve Review


Never mind Alistair Cooke's monologue which opens The Three Faces of Eve: The film is not a true story presented without embellishment. It is based on a novel, which itself was based loosely on a true story about a woman with multiple personality disorder.

Joanne Woodward's performance in the title role is pretty much the only reason to see the film today -- mental illness has been handled with much more grace in the years since. Woodward deftly handles the difficult task of running through three characters: At first she's Eve White, a troubled and plain young woman, and soon enough Eve Black, a brazen hussie, comes to the forefront, doing battle with Eve White. As her psyche continues to degenerate, a third identity, Jane, comes to the forefront. Eve's psychiatrists are offered up as heroes -- looking back at them today reveals that they're all total chumps -- and through a series of absurd hypnotisms she eventually comes to grips with her past abuse and, like that, gets well.

The film merited an Oscar for Woodward -- it would be one of the most notable films in which an actor earned the award for playing a mentally ill character, but the film is surprisingly bereft of any other notable qualities. (The movie earned four nominations from various groups, all for Woodward's performance.)

Why the snub? Ultimately, The Three Faces of Eve has the same doomsaying breathlessness of, say, Reefer Madness or a highschool film reel. Even an oblivious 1957 audience must have seen that. Writer/director Nunnally Johnson wrote some 60 films over his career but directed only a handful in the 1950s (notably The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit). He's better off with a typewriter, sealing his doom with Cooke's wide-eyed diatribe from frame one. The film makes no serious statement about mental illness, but it doesn't really try to either. It's just a showcase for his leading lady.

Put it aside and watch the film for Woodward. She never reached heights like this before or since.

The new DVD includes a feature commentary from film historian Aubrey Solomon.

Aka The 3 Faces of Eve.



The Three Faces of Eve

Facts and Figures

Run time: 91 mins

In Theaters: Monday 23rd September 1957

Distributed by: Fox

Production compaines: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 93%
Fresh: 14 Rotten: 1

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Starring: as Eve White, as Ralph White, as Doctor Curtis Luther, as Doctor Francis Day, as Earl, Mimi Gibson as Eve (as a child), Mary Field as Effie, sales clerk, as Soldier, Terry Ann Ross as Bonnie White, Nancy Kulp as Mrs. Black, Douglas Spencer as Mr. Black, as Himself (prologue narrator)

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Trumbo Movie Review

Trumbo Movie Review

An entertaining film about sobering true events, this is the story of notorious screenwriter Dalton...

Goosebumps Movie Review

Goosebumps Movie Review

Mixing the action, comedy and horror from novelist R.L. Stein's books into a family-friendly package,...

Dad's Army Movie Review

Dad's Army Movie Review

The beloved 1970s British sit-com gets the big screen treatment, although there's been very little...

Spotlight Movie Review

Spotlight Movie Review

This film demonstrates that you don't need guns to make an exciting thriller. Based on...

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

Not the subtlest director working in Hollywood, Michael Bay brings his surging machismo to this...

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find...

The Big Short Movie Review

The Big Short Movie Review

Smart and snappy, this comedy is one of the scariest films of the year, using...

Advertisement
The 5th Wave Movie Review

The 5th Wave Movie Review

Also based on the first in a trilogy of post-apocalyptic teen novels, this thriller feels...

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ice Cube and Kevin Hart reteam for a sequel no one really asked for, following...

Room Movie Review

Room Movie Review

One of the most extraordinary films of the year, this drama cleverly weaves in events...

Creed Movie Review

Creed Movie Review

While this film is basically Rocky VII, it's also much more than that, and perhaps...

A Perfect Day Movie Review

A Perfect Day Movie Review

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an...

Partisan Movie Review

Partisan Movie Review

With his feature debut, young Australian filmmaker Ariel Kleiman tells a creepy story about a...

The Revenant Movie Review

The Revenant Movie Review

A wrenching saga of survival and revenge, Alejandro G. Inarritu's new epic is just as...

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

Quentin Tarantino is a filmmaker who simply can't be ignored, especially when he lobs a...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.