×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Lodger

With a pat cast, keen direction and tight scripting, 20th-Fox has an absorbing and, at times, spine-tingling drama concocted from Marie Belloc Lowndes' novel The Lodger. It's a super chiller-diller in its picturization of a Scotland Yard manhunt for London's Jack the Ripper.

With:
Merle Oberon George Sanders Laird Cregar Cedric Hardwicke Sara Allgood Aubrey Mather

With a pat cast, keen direction and tight scripting, 20th-Fox has an absorbing and, at times, spine-tingling drama concocted from Marie Belloc Lowndes’ novel The Lodger. It’s a super chiller-diller in its picturization of a Scotland Yard manhunt for London’s Jack the Ripper.

Director John Brahm and scripter Barre Lyndon make it as much a psychological study of the halfcrazed ‘Lodger’ (Laird Cregar), as if in a deftly-paced horrific whodunit in trying to outline some explanation for the repeated throatslashings of London stage women, neither has even slightly deviated from the swift weaving of events. Aside from preliminary steps, sequence of events mounts in rapid succession with suspense injected time after time with telling effect.

It is Laird Cregar’s picture. As ‘The Ripper’ he gives an impressive performance. It is a relentless, at times pathetic character as he pursues his self-appointed task of avenging his brother. His precise diction and almost studied poise make his characterization all the more impressive.

Merle Oberon is highly effective as Kitty, the dancer, of respectable family whose stardom is nearly abruptly ended. Stage sequences show her a graceful dancer in abbreviated skirt and provide the bright contrast to somber and melodramatic passages. Kept more or less in the background initially, her scene in the dressing room, when she pleads for her life, is the high dramatic spot of the production. George Sanders, cast as a sleuth, is strong.

The Lodger

Production: 20th Century-Fox. Director John Brahm; Producer Robert Bassler; Screenplay Barre Lyndon; Camera Lucien Ballard; Editor J. Watson Webb; Music Hugo Friedhofer; Art Director James Basevi, John Ewing

Crew: (B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1944. Running time: 84 MIN.

With: Merle Oberon George Sanders Laird Cregar Cedric Hardwicke Sara Allgood Aubrey Mather

More Film

  • The Hunchback of Notre Dame

    'Hunchback of Notre Dame' Live-Action Reboot in the Works at Disney

    Disney is in early development on a live-action “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” movie, based on Disney’s animated film and Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel “Notre-Dame de Paris.” Playwright David Henry Hwang is attached to write the script, with Mandeville Films and Josh Gad set to produce. Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz will pen the music. [...]

  • Bill Skarsgard and Eliza Scanlen

    'It' Star Bill Skarsgard and 'Sharp Objects' Actress Eliza Scanlen Join Netflix's 'The Devil All the Time' (EXCLUSIVE)

    “It” star Bill Skarsgard and “Sharp Objects” breakout Eliza Scanlen will star in Antonio Campos’ adaptation of “The Devil All the Time,” which Netflix has officially acquired for distribution. Skarsgard and Scanlen join an all-star cast that includes Tom Holland, Chris Evans, Mia Wasikowska, Robert Pattinson and Tony Award winner Gabriel Ebert, who attached themselves [...]

  • READY PLAYER ONE

    How Writer-Crew Collaborations Are Changing the Script for the Creative Process

    In traditional filmmaking, once a script is written, the director and department heads break it down and figure out the costs and logistics of production. But if the screenwriter collaborates during the creative process with key crew members, the entire production can benefit.  Such collaboration offers the prospect of help on many fronts. For example, [...]

  • FICG TV Pitchbox Confirms Fox, Alazraki,

    FICG TV Pitchbox Swells Key Company Attendance

    Fox Networks Group Latin America (FNGLA), Alazraki Films, EndemolShine Boomdog and Fabula have confirmed their attendance at the inaugural FICG TV Pitchbox, the new co-production market of one of Latin America’s biggest film events, Mexico’s Guadalajara International Film Festival (FICG). They join previously announced participants HBO Latin America and Turner Latin America (FNGLA). More attendees, [...]

  • Alamode Acquires Lone Scherfig’s ‘The Kindness

    Alamode Acquires Lone Scherfig’s Berlin Opener ‘The Kindness of Strangers’

    Munich-based Alamode has taken German and Austrian rights to Lone Scherfig’s “The Kindness of Strangers,” ahead of the picture’s opening-night gala screening at the Berlin Film Festival next month. Alamode acquired the rights from London-based HanWay Films, which is handling worldwide sales. Entertainment One is distributing the film in Canada and SF Studios in Scandinavia. [...]

  • Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller

    Voltage Pictures to Produce Airborne Thriller 'Blackwing' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Voltage Pictures will produce and fully finance screenwriter David Loughery’s latest thriller “Blackwing,” Variety has learned exclusively. The company will introduce “Blackwing” to buyers at the upcoming European Film Market at the Berlin Film Festival, which opens Feb. 7. Nicolas Chartier and Dominic Rustam are producing, and Jonathan Deckter is executive producing for Voltage Pictures. [...]

  • ‘Metro Exodus’ Opens Up Post-Apocalyptic Russia

    ‘Metro Exodus’ Author On Film, Possible TV Series, Expansive New Game

    Since the launch of the post-apocalyptic survival first-person shooter “Metro 2033” in 2010, the series has kept its action confined to the tunnels running underneath Russia. “Metro Exodus,” due out next month, takes the gameplay to the surface for the first time, going above ground with sprawling levels against a changing backdrop of weather conditions [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content