House of Strangers


Crime / Drama / Film-Noir / Thriller

Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 80%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 72%
IMDb Rating 7.4 10 2189


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Downloaded 28,280 times
June 26, 2017 at 10:16 AM


Edward G. Robinson as Gino Monetti
Debra Paget as Maria Domenico
Susan Hayward as Irene Bennett
Richard Conte as Max Monetti
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
721.21 MB
23.976 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 1 / 7
1.52 GB
23.976 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 7 / 9

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by JohnHowardReid 8 / 10

An atmospheric noir!

Despite its other defects, at least the costumes in "Hearts in Bondage" were much as we might expect people to wear in the period. The same cannot be said for the clothes worn by Susan Hayward, Debra Paget, Richard Conte and company in "House of Strangers" (1949). It comes as quite a shock halfway through the film to realize a gin mill is actually a speakeasy and that the film is actually set in 1932. You'd never know it from the 1949 wardrobes that are on display throughout the movie's entire running time from 1932 to 1939!

Aside from this numbing anachronism, this is a solidly atmospheric noir with Richard Conte in one of his most dramatic and well-rounded roles, and receiving great support from gowned-to-the-hilt Susan Hayward, vitriolic Edward G. Robinson, sleazy Luther Adler and dumb-head, Paul Valentine.

Stylishly directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz (who has also supplied some neat ripostes and additional dialogue), this film has worn well. In fact it seemed more engrossing on Fox's 10/10 DVD than my recollection of its quality when I saw it on original release.

Reviewed by deickos 7 / 10

Another classic

This film is one more sample of how easily old masters like Joseph Mankiewicz played with the themes and variations and thus exercised total control on their means and their art. This is a very interesting film-noir version of a classic - I am talking of course of King Lear. It is surprisingly refreshing to see this version of the classic theme and although the story is not perfect it is convincing.

Reviewed by lasttimeisaw 7 / 10

a gripping tale at large under Mr. Mankiewicz's proficient supervision

In 1949, the soon-to-be Hollywood dignitary Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who would win 4 Oscars within two consecutive years (2 for directing and 2 for writing), knocks out two features, while A LETTER TO THREE WIVES takes all the spotlight in January (and the paycheck is Mr. Mankiewicz's first two Oscars, a full-year after), HOUSE OF STRANGERS, released five months later after its debut in Cannes, is ill-fatedly pigeonholed and regarded as a trou normand before the advent of his unqualified pièce de résistance ALL ABOUT EVE (1950), garnering another 2 naked golden statuettes for the champ.

Based on Phillip Yordan's novel I'LL NEVER GO THERE ANY MORE, the film is a studio-bound feud within the Monetti family, the patriarch Gino (Robinson) is an Italian banker in the East Side of New York, who starts his enterprise from scratch, begets four sons and his druthers is the second-born Max (Conte), who is a lawyer by vocation, whereas the other three work for the family bank.

The film starts on the day Max is released from prison after a 7-year stint, bays for blood after an altercation with his brothers and rebuffs the proposition to start anew in San Francisco with his old flame Irene Bennett (Hayward), at that point Gino has already been pushing up daisies. Then the flashback prompts to dwell on the familial tension from its initial stage, how Gino's preferential disposition detrimentally splinters his family into the titular "house of strangers" and causes deep rift when the family bank clashes with government investigation, and the story cogently flags up the capitalistic avarice, posits Gino as an usurious tyrant squeezing pecuniary gain out of the have-nots. Max is the only son who is spoiling for extricating Gino from the legal mire, but he is hoisted by his own petard when he tries to bribe a juror while his eldest brother Joe (Adler) has already secretly shopped him, that costs him a good 7-year and now he is back for vendetta, implanted by a vengeful Gino before his demise, can the ominous fratricide be averted in the eleventh hour?

Edward G. Robinson meritoriously won the BEST ACTOR trophy in Cannes and here his pompous mien writs large through the most compelling register, his Gino is an unrepentant egoist, a terrible father, paternalistic and uncouth, sticks to the value of family and tradition but has no clue that poison has already been interjecting into his progeny through their upbringing: the wicked, the spoiled, the dumb and the craven, here is the Monetti Quartet.

Max, played by a shifty-looking Richard Conte, is at first, nothing less repugnant than his magisterial father (both have the dastardly proclivity for laying their hands on women when confronted, can Mr. Robinson vanquishes a towering Hope Emerson in real life? The odds are not good on him!), but he is bestowed with a redeeming factor that he is the most upstanding one among the offspring to deserve a brighter future, but bemusing still, Max's final change-of-mind is cavalierly oversimplified. Susan Hayward, whose star was rising at then, channels a femme-fatale mystique on top of Irene's lonesome dame cliché, and Luther Adler, nearly upstages the rest with his fiendishly self-seeking turn as the nefarious Joe.

Honestly, HOUSE OF STRANGERS is a gripping tale at large under Mr. Mankiewicz's proficient supervision, on the technical level, it is as good as any top-drawer monochromatic studio fare of that time, only the shady nuts-and-bolts of the doctrinaire story take the shine off the outstanding teamwork.

Read more IMDb reviews


Be the first to leave a comment