In 1947, Sally Gray starred in The Mark of Cain. The film is about two wealthy brothers from the British Midlands in the early 1900s. While on business in France, one brother (Eric Portman) meets a beautiful young woman named Sarah (Sally Gray) who was born in England but raised in France. He takes a liking to Sarah but then his more dashing younger brother (Patrick Holt) shows up and he immediately steals her away and are soon married. The older brother remains perpetually resentful and bides his time until he can devise a plan to get Sarah all for himself. Meanwhile, Sarah feels that she doesn't fit in at her new home and her husband begins to spend more and more time away from home.
The Mark of Cain is a wonderful movie that sadly has not found a bigger audience. The film works largely because the emotions displayed are palpable. When Sally Gray's character is shunned by her husband's friends and the household staff for being perceived as a foreigner with strange manners, the viewer can feel this undeserved hatred. The Mark of Cain also works as an excellent study on jealousy and murder and Eric Portman expertly plays the brother with the twisted psyche. There is also a fantastic courtroom scene near the end of the film and, again, Eric Portman plays the scene to the hilt.
Sally Gray was on a real roll in the late 1940s and the actress participated in a series of excellent films. The Mark of Cain (along with other another lower budget effort Silent Dust) seems to have fallen by the wayside somewhat, while other films like Green for Danger, They Made Me a Fugitive and Obsession have been re-released and found new audiences. Perhaps someday we'll see hidden gems like Mark of Cain receive a proper release.
In The Mark of Cain, Sally Gray thrives in the period setting. The beautiful actress gets to wear a number of flamboyant gowns and extravagant hats and veils. Sally Gray also does a fine job with her character, the doomed Sarah. It's simultaneously fun and distressing to see the lovely Sally Gray go from complete happiness to deep anguish. Overall, this was a great role for the talented actress and one that deserves to be seen by all.
Here are some images of Sally Gray in The Mark of Cain: