Thursday, July 27, 2017

Downhill (1927)

W and F Film Service (UK)
Directed by Alfred Hitchcock
My rating: 2.5 stars out of 4
IMDb Wikipedia
(Blu-ray, Criterion Collection)

College pals spend an afternoon with a local bakery shop girl, who shows up later at the dean's office and accuses them of "inappropriate conduct". She falsely claims the father is the boy with the rich parents, who is promptly expelled and then disowned by his parents. He flees to France where he is taken advantage of by more women, including his new wife who runs through his large unexpected inheritance in no time. He ends up in a trance-like state on the docks of Marseilles, where he is helped on a ship by some friendly sailors and ends up back in England. Hitchcock's follow up to the very successful The Lodger once again features Ivor Novello in the lead role, who also wrote the screenplay. It is a cynical, misogynistic story, perhaps influenced by Novello's status as a gay matinee idol in the 1920s. Hitchcock further develops his visual style, with excellent use of shadows and montage effects.

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