The Amazing Mr. X (a.k.a. The Spiritualist)
Dir. Bernard Vorhaus. 1948, 78 mins. 35mm. With Lynn Bari, Turhan Bey. A slick, fraudulent spiritualist preys on a widow yearning to re-connect with her husband, staging elaborate ghostly visitations. But his illusions turn out to be far from the cruelest in this story, which explores the classic noir theme of someone’s desperate desire to recover a lost past, and the bitter consequences of this impossible dream. The real magic is supplied by cinematographer John Alton, who imbues the film with a misty, twilit, ethereal sheen, making the most of a romantic seaside setting. His work, long seen only on murky public domain videos, can now be appreciated in a restored print.