The Lodger

1944

Crime / Horror / Mystery / Thriller

143
IMDb Rating 7.1 10 3

Synopsis


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May 15, 2021

Director

Cast

Cedric Hardwicke as Ralph Nickleby
Frank Hagney as Soldier
George Sanders as Basil Palmer
Merle Oberon as Anne Boleyn - The Second Wife
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
769.52 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
84 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.4 GB
1920×1080
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
84 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Ron Oliver 10 / 10 / 10

Mania, Murder & Melodrama

With all England horrified by the fiendish exploits of Jack the Ripper, a London family slowly becomes concerned by the strange habits of THE LODGER who has rented rooms upstairs... Atmospheric & creepy, this is one of the great suspense films. Based on the celebrated 1913 horror novel of Marie Belloc Lowndes, the movie memorably captures the panic & paranoia which reigned in London during the Ripper crimes. Using the full palette of shades available to black & white cinematography, the movie creates a chilling, eerie, atmosphere in which one can walk Whitechapel's narrow streets with the murderer. Laird Cregar mesmerizes in the title role, his great, strange eyes following the viewer like those in the portraits he detests. He is the very picture of obsession & madness. Although lovely Merle Oberon & stalwart George Sanders do very well as the romantic leads, it is Cregar, his tremendous bulk moving silently through the shadows, who will remain in viewers' imaginations. As the landlords, Sara Allgood & Sir Cedric Hardwicke are exceptional, portraying basically quiet people who come to the alarming conclusion that all is not right in their household. A solid group of character actors - Queenie Leonard, Helena Pickard, Anita Sharp-Bolster, Lumsden Hare - also give vivid performances. Movie mavens will recognize uncredited turns by Billy Bevan as a bartender and, behind the mustache, little Charlie Hall, veteran of many a Laurel & Hardy comedy, as the music hall comedian whose song is interrupted by the Ripper's last attack. Special mention should be made of British Doris Lloyd (1896-1968), an excellent actress usually seen only in tiny bit roles, often uncredited. Here, unforgettably, she gets to deliver a short, sharp lesson in utter terror as the last of the Ripper's victims. Arriving in Hollywood during the Silent Era, Miss Lloyd would continue to grace small movie moments for decades to come. Laird Cregar is one of the great What Ifs? of American cinema. Arising out of obscurity, this young actor quickly showed a remarkable talent and was quite soon given featured & starring roles, of which THE LODGER is the most memorable. Alas, his star was to blink out as fast as it rose. Wishing to move into leading & romantic parts, he subjected his 300-pound frame to an extreme crash diet. His body responded with a massive heart attack, killing him only a few months after THE LODGER's release. He was 28 years old. The film gives a somewhat fictionalized account of the depredations of Jack the Ripper, his identity & the true names of his victims being the most obvious changes. From August 7th to November 10th, 1888, a killer who would become known as Jack the Ripper horrifically butchered seven prostitutes in London's East End, committing acts of such barbaric savagery on the bodies as to be positively bestial. He was never caught, despite a huge public outcry and tremendous efforts from Scotland Yard. In the intervening years there have been numerous suggestive solutions to his identity put forward, some quite fanciful, but no proofs have ever been posited. Jack took his terrible secrets with him to the grave.

Reviewed by bmacv 9 / 10 / 10

Mrs. Lowndes' evergreen tale of the Ripper finds a memorable exemplar in Laird Cregar

It's London's autumn of terror – 1888 – when Jack the Ripper stalked the slums of Whitechapel to eviscerate gin-soaked prostitutes and shake the capital of the British Empire to its foundations. John Brahm's movie opens on the gas-lit and fog-wreathed cobblestones, evocatively shot by Lucien Ballard, in this umpteenth recension of Marie Belloc Lowndes' evergreen chiller The Lodger (Alfred Hitchcock did a silent treatment in 1927, and Jack Palance would star in Man in the Attic in 1954 , to name but two of its closest cousins). The crafty Mrs. Lowndes may have been the first to use that surefire scare tactic `the call is coming from inside the house!' The gimmick of her story is that the fiend has a respectable face and may have taken lodgings under a respectable roof while its respectable occupants remain oblivious but imperiled. Brahm's choice of lodger is Laird Cregar, whose enormous bulk – he was six-three and 300 pounds – made him look perpetually 45, though he was only 28 when he died, shortly after making this movie. (His last, released posthumously the following year, was the somewhat similar Hangover Square, which Brahm also directed). The rooms he takes (including an attic `laboratory' complete with gas fire for his experiments) belong to Cedric Hardwicke and Sara Allgood, whose niece Merle Oberon, a music-hall star, lives there as well. When Laird is invited to attend one of Oberon's can-can numbers, he rants and raves about painted and powdered woman and finally erupts: `I can show you something more beautiful than a beautiful woman,' whereupon he produces a photograph of his dead brother, who came to ruin through consorting with wicked women (there's the merest insinuation of syphilitic insanity). Clearly, the lodger has unresolved issues. The Ripper legend and Lowndes' telling of it are so familiar it needs no retracing, save to note that George Sanders plays the smitten Scotland Yard Detective and that Brahm delivers all the expected chills. But then this German emigrant always fared better with the spooky and the Victorian than with the hard-boiled and American. The Lodger counts among his finer hours-and-a-half.

Reviewed by hitchcockthelegend 9 / 10 / 10

Your beauty is exquisite.

Victorian London, Whitechapple, and some maniac is slaughtering women with stage backgrounds. Could it be that the mysterious Mr. Slade who has rented the upstairs rooms from Mrs Burton, is the man known as Jack the Ripper? This part of London is cloaked in fog, the cobbled streets damp and bearing witness to unspeakable crimes, the gas lights dimly flicker as the British Bobby searches in vain for Bloody Jack. The scene is set for what is to me the finest adaptation to deal with the notorious murderer, Jack the Ripper. A remake of the Alfred Hitchcock silent from 1927, this adaptation of the Marie Belloc Lowndes novel not only looks great (Lucien Ballard's photography creating fluid eeriness and film noir fatalism) but also chills the blood without ever actually spilling any. It's a testament to John Brahm's direction that the film constantly feels like a coiled spring waiting to explode, a spring that is realised in the form of Laird Cregar's incredibly unnerving portrayal of Mr Slade. Laird Cregar, as evidenced here, was a fine actor in the making. Sadly troubled by his weight and yearning to become a true matinée idol, he crashed dieted to such a degree his poor 28 year old heart couldn't cope with the shock. After just 16 films, of which this was his second to last, the movie world was robbed of a truly fine performer, a sad story in a long line of sad incidents that taint the Hollywood story. George Sanders and Merle Oberon (as police inspector and Slade's infatuation respectively) engage in a less than fully realised romantic strand, and Cedric Hardwicke dominates all the scenes that don't feature the might of Cregar, but really it's the big man's show all the way. Creepily enhanced by Hugo Friedhofer's score, The Lodger is a lesson in how to utilise technical atmospherics. The moody atmosphere here hangs heavy and the sense of doom is palpable in the extreme, it comes as something of a relief when the ending finally comes, for then it's time to reflect and exhale a sigh of relief. Deviating from the novel, something which has over the years annoyed purists, The Lodger shows its hand very much from the off, yet this in no way hurts the picture. In fact if anything the exasperation at the supporting characters induces dry humour, The kind that comes in the form of nervous giggles out there in the dark, but rest assured, this is no comedy, it's a creepy classic from a wonderful era of film making. 9/10

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