The Lodger

1927

Action / Crime / Drama / Mystery / Thriller

60
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 95%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 75%
IMDb Rating 7.4 10 8233

Synopsis


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Cast

Alfred Hitchcock as Extra in Newspaper Office
Reginald Gardiner as Dancer at Ball
720p.BLU
703.30 MB
1280*720
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 14 min
P/S 5 / 4

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Coventry 8 / 10

Meet young Hitchcock. He's already obsessed with "Psychos"

I'm hardly ever in the right mood to watch silent movies, but as a self-declared cinephile, you should make some necessary exceptions. The earliest work of Alfred Hitchcock, for example, since he undoubtedly is one of the (if not THE) most important director of all times. Admittedly I don't worship the Master of Suspense's entire repertoire, but I am extremely fond of his horror/thriller movies dealing with psychopathic murderers, and thus "The Lodger" ought to be considered as mandatory viewing. I can only concur with what I've read in numerous reviews, namely that Hitchcock's preferences for macabre tales, mentally burdened lead characters, pitch black humor and unorthodox plot twists are already clearly noticeable here in this primitive story inspired by the Jack the Ripper case. Visually and stylistically, young Alfred's creative mind also was already far more advanced than the technological possibilities of that era. It's abundantly clear that he wanted to do so much more with his cameras, lighting effects and sound, but the film industry simply wasn't ready or equipped yet. How frustrating that must have been. Anyway, as said, the story is a slightly more polished re-enactment of the Ripper murders that kept London under siege at the end of the 19th century. Instead of prostitutes, the killer is exclusively targeting "fair-haired" girls and for some reason he's only prowling the streets on Tuesday evenings. When a mysterious and deeply introvert young man applies for the room she has for rent, the landlady slowly begins to suspect that he might be wanted killer. After all, he often covers half of his face with a scarf, just as how witnesses described the killer, and he shows a lot of interest for the beautiful fair-haired daughter Daisy. Hitchcock demonstrates his vision and talents through maintaining a continuously unsettling atmosphere, a couple of genuinely tense sequences and a few stunning (especially for 1927) camera angles. The finale, illustrating a relentless manhunt by a furious mob, is truly astounding and certain themes from the denouement would later grow out to be director's trademarks. Acting performances are always difficult to judge in silent films, but I must say I was perplexed by the appearance of Malcolm Keen. He's supposed to be the honest police detective, but his eyes and charisma are far more evil and menacing than those of any serial killer I've ever seen!

Reviewed by JohnHowardReid 7 / 10

Jack the Ripper?

Not copyrighted in the U.S.A. where it was released by Amer-Anglo Corp. in 1928. U.K. release through W&F Film Service in September 1926. Original running time: approx. 100 minutes.

SYNOPSIS: A new lodger acts suspiciously. Is it possible he's a Jack-the-Ripper killer?

NOTES: Re-made, again with Novello in the lead, by director Maurice Elvey in 1932. Titled The Phantom Fiend in the U.S. Other re-makes: 1944 (John Brahm directing Laird Cregar); 1953 (Jack Palance directed by Hugo Fregonese, titled Man in the Attic); 2008 (Shane West directed by David Ondaatje).

COMMENT: Although it no longer seems as innovative as when first released and although tension is somewhat undermined by the obvious fact that Ivor Novello could not possibly turn out to be the killer (even though the script most disappointingly presents no alternatives), The Lodger still packs enough ambiance and atmosphere to hold a modern audience's attention, especially in its original tinted version. Novello's "acting" is more "posing" than performing, and the other players are sometimes a mite too enthusiastic in their pantomiming, but these styles are pretty much par for 1926. Aside from the lavishly staged climax, production values are by no means over-extensive. (AVAILABLE on DVD in St Clair Vision's Hitchcock Collection. Quality rating: 7 out of ten).

Reviewed by Ian 8 / 10

Hitchcock Finding His Zone

(Flash Review)

Regarded as Hitchcock's first true feature film, he brings a lot of cleverness, tension and intrigue to the story. A story about a serial killer known as the Avenger who is speculated to be wearing a scarf. One day, during the London Fog, a man with a scarf comes knocking looking for lodging where a room is for rent. The woman hesitantly rents him a room but becomes increasingly suspicious. Has she just rented a room to a serial killer or is she being overly worried? Will the lodger be treated normally during his stay especially when he starts to fancy the woman's daughter? Hitchcock builds great suspense as the story unfolds with some creative camera trickery, effective POV shots all accompanied by stellar and moody cinematography. With this film, Hitchcock set the tone and themes for his outstanding film career.

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