Sunday, 29 December 2013

Capital Celluloid 2014 - Day 20: Mon Jan 20

The Night of the Hunter (Laughton, 1955): BFI Southbank, NFT1, 6.30pm & NFT3, 8.40pm

This film, which opens on Friday 17th January in a new restoration, is on an extended run at BFI Southbank until February.

Chicago Reader review:
Charles Laughton's first and only film as a director (1955) is an enduring masterpiece—dark, deep, beautiful, aglow. Robert Mitchum, in the role that most fully exploits his ferocious sexuality, is the evil preacher pursuing two orphaned children across a sinister, barren midwest; Lillian Gish is the widow who protects the children, in a depiction of maternal love worthy of her mentor, D.W. Griffith. Laughton's direction has Germanic overtones—not only in the expressionism that occasionally grips the image, but also in a pervasive, brooding romanticism that suggests the Erl-King of Goethe and Schubert. But ultimately the source of its style and power is mysterious—it is a film without precedent and without any real equals.
Dave Kehr

Here (and above) is an extract.

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