Banker Arthur Hamilton (John Randolph) gets a call one day from a friend he thought was dead. It turns out that the friend is not a ghost, but was simply faking all along, and was placed into a new existence by a company who can give you a completely new face and life. Hamilton decides to undergo the procedure himself and becomes Tony Wilson (Rock Hudson), an artist who lives in Malibu. He is given a manservant to help him adjust but soon finds that adjusting will be the least of his worries.
Based on a novel by David Ely
The real revelation here, though, is Rock Hudson. Fighting against type, he delivers a superb performance as the man with a new face who’s forced to consider his past, present and future from a unique perspective.
This post is short and sweet, but I really don’t want to say too much more about SECONDS for fear of spoiling it for those who haven’t seen it. The movie was hard to find for many years, but was re-released on bluray and DVD by the Criterion Collection in 2013. It’s fair to say that, after a superb opening segment, the film sags a little during the middle act, but it soon picks up speed again towards the end. The final startling scenes, once watched, will stay in your memory for a long time after viewing.
SECONDS is highly recommended.