Friday, August 4, 2017

The Night of the Hunter (1955)

An American crime adventure directed by Charles Laughton, starring Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters and Lillian Gish.
The father of a boy and girl steals money and hides it in his daughter's doll, swearing both children to secrecy. He is arrested and dies in jail. His prison buddy found out about the money, but not the hiding place and marries the widow when he gets out. He tries to get the children to tell him and they eventually tell after he has killed their mother. The children then take their father's old boat down the river and are found by a woman who adopts orphan children. When the man who is after the money comes into town, conflict continues.
This was all about plot and characters, but had some good video. The plot held my attention even though it was an older film than I usually watch. The characters were cast excellently and the acting was top notch. They didn't have fancy Hollywood tricks to hide behind back then. Some of the best shots were the man's hands (picture), B-roll while the children were in the boat and a symbolic B-roll scene of an owl catching a rabbit. The audio featured some very mournful music and all audible dialogue. Overall, a film that got the basics so right that it deserves a high rating. I'll give it good. Watch it if you're not against old, black and white movies.

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