Directed by David Lean • 1950 • United Kingdom
Starring Ann Todd, Ivan Desny, Norman Wooland
One of David Lean’s most neglected and atypical works is an engrossing dramatization of the true crime that shocked nineteenth-century Scotland. Ann Todd stars in the title role of the wealthy socialite Madeleine Smith, who bucks Victorian convention by pursuing a scandalous affair with the working-class Frenchman Emile L’Angelier (Ivan Desny). When Emile dies suddenly of arsenic poisoning, suspicion falls on Madeleine and she takes the stand in a trial that will rivet the nation.