We’ve almost reached the end of September and that means that Sunday Matinee will be going on hiatus for the month of October as I’ll be doing 31 Days of Horror again. This year’s theme will Canadian horror movies in honour of Canada’s 150 anniversary.
Today’s Sunday Matinee is Alfred Hitchcock’s 1927 masterpiece The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog. This was Hitchcock’s third movie but his first thriller.
The plot has a serial killer on the loose, attacking blonde women on Tuesdays. While all the other blonde women are scared and hide their hair, Daisy Bunting (June Tripp) isn’t afraid. She lives at home with her folks and her boyfriend Joe (Malcolm Keen) is a police officer. Her parents are renting a room and a young man (Ivor Novello), who matches the descriptions of the killer, who calls himself The Avenger, comes to rent the room.
Slowly Daisy starts to fall for the lodger who is quiet and strange. When Joe starts to resent the lodger and confronts Daisy she breaks up with him. Joe then starts to believe that the lodger is The Avenger.
This is very early Hitchcock but it’s excellent. Several themes in this film Hitchcock would reuse in several of films over the years. Blonde female leads, ominous camera angles, shadowy lighting and an innocent man falsely accused and on the run. Hitchcock would refer to this film as “first true Hitchcock film” and it certainly lives up to the title.