HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Deathstalker II
Cloak and Dagger
Honeyland
Love Ban, The
Western Stars
League of Gentlemen, The
Higher Power
Shinsengumi
IT Chapter Two
Rich Kids
Arena
Glory Guys, The
Serial Killer's Guide to Life, A
Lovers and Other Strangers
Shiny Shrimps, The
Good Woman is Hard to Find, A
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
Doctor at Sea
Spear
Death Cheaters
Wild Rose
Streetwalkin'
Mystify: Michael Hutchence
Devil's Playground, The
Cleanin' Up the Town: Remembering Ghostbusters
Hustlers
Mega Time Squad
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
Souvenir, The
Birds of Passage
Ma
Woman at War
Happy as Lazzaro
Mickey's Christmas Carol
Marriage Story
Santa Claus is a Bastard
Star, The
Tom & Jerry: A Nutcracker Tale
Shadow
Christmas Carol, A
   
 
Newest Articles
Bash Street Kid: Cosh Boy on Blu-ray
Seeing is Believing: Being There on Blu-ray
Top Thirty Best (and Ten Worst) Films of the 2010s by Andrew Pragasam
Top of the Tens: The Best Films of the Decade by Graeme Clark
Terrorvision: A Ghost Story for Christmas in the 1970s
Memories Are Made of This: La Jetee and Sans Soleil on Blu-ray
Step Back in Time: The Amazing Mr. Blunden on Blu-ray
Crazy Cats and Kittens: What's New Pussycat on Blu-ray
No Place Like Home Guard: Dad's Army - The Lost Episodes on Blu-ray
A Real-Life Pixie: A Tribute to Michael J. Pollard in Four Roles
We're All In This Together: The Halfway House on Blu-ray
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
   
 
  Hangover Square I Got The Music In MeBuy this film here.
Year: 1945
Director: John Brahm
Stars: Laird Cregar, Linda Darnell, George Sanders, Glenn Langan, Faye Marlowe, Alan Napier
Genre: Horror, Thriller
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Although composer George Harvey Bone (Laird Cregar) doesn't recall any of this, he is a murderer. Tonight during a fit he killed an antiques dealer and set fire to his shop, then escaped into the gaslit, Edwardian night, still bleeding from the temple and in a state of confusion. He would bump into passersby on his way home, but the mist in front of his eyes would not clear until he returned home. There, his patron, Sir Henry Chapman (Alan Napier) and his daughter Barbara Chapman (Faye Marlowe) were awaiting him, wondering where he had been and why he was wounded, but he couldn't say. Maybe it was time to bring in professional help...

Hangover Square was very loosely based on the novel of the same name by Patrick Hamilton, but was really a way to bring back some of the team who had made the previous year's remake of The Lodger such a hit. So Cregar returned to the role of the madman and George Sanders the role of the police detective (a crime doctor this time) and director John Brahm and writer Barré Lyndon were also back. Sadly, for the hulking Cregar it would be his final role because of his crash dieting, wanting to play romantic leads he thought being slimmer would help, but the actual effect was a fatal heart attack.

Knowing this gives the film a particular poignancy, and not simply because Cregar invests the character with such sympathy in spite of his unwitting murderousness. George is really the cliché of the tortured artist gone to extremes, as he strives to finish his beloved concerto (a suitably dramatic work actually scored by Bernard Herrmann) but gets distracted by a lovely lady. Well, she might be outwardly lovely but inside music hall singer Netta Longdon (Linda Darnell) is petulant and manipulative and positively the worst person for George to be simtten with.

All Netta wants is for George to write her some catchy tunes, which ironically he has an ear for, and there would be a snobbishness in the script that sees George brought low by penning showtunes if Netta wasn't such a despicable character. Darnell is great here, proving herself not just a pretty face with some fine performing as the film's real villain, but such is the story that it's easy to see where she will end up when George twigs he is being played for a sap. All it takes is for him to hear a dischordant noise and the red mist descends - in typical horror movie touch he has to kill to shake it off and return to normal.

To accompany some fine acting, Brahm especially flexed his directorial muscles here, with some very stylish set-ups. The opening murder is startlingly shot partly with subjective camera, and he utilises a range of closeups, swooping camera moves and camera effects to work up a sense of delirium. This is not to all tastes, and it's unavoidably more over the top than The Lodger, but its histrionics and hyperbole create a texture of tragic madness that perfectly compliments Cregar's haunted playing. Oddly, by the climax, which ends in a close-to-ludicrous concert inferno, we're on poor old George's side all the way as he's as much the victim as those he has bumped off - if he had succeeded in strangling nice Barbara as he attempts to, then perhaps we would have less compassion, however. The real shame of it would be that there would be no more Cregar performances: still in his twenties, he was dead by the time this was released.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3310 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
  Rachel Franke
Enoch Sneed
Paul Smith
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: