HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Never Grow Old
Time of Your Life, The
Mountain Men, The
Epic
Best Before Death
John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum
Isabelle
Non-Stop New York
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood
Oblomov
Alita: Battle Angel
We the Animals
Ibiza Undead
Wings of Eagles, The
Beats
Body Parts
Shock of the Future, The
Friday
High Life
High Noon
Comes a Horseman
Scandal in Paris, A
Greta
Fight, The
Pink Jungle, The
Skiptrace
Double Date
Mind of Mr. Soames, The
Long Shot
Sherlock Holmes
Amazing Grace
Monitors, The
Memory: The Origins of Alien
Mesa of Lost Women
Banana Splits Movie, The
In Fabric
Sisters Brothers, The
Aniara
Flamingo Kid, The
Queen, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
Marvel's Least Loved and Most Loved: Fantastic 4 vs Avengers: Endgame
Battle of the Skeksis: The Dark Crystal Now and Then
American Madness: Sam Fuller's Shock Corridor and The Naked Kiss on Blu-ray
Flight of the Navigator and the 80s Futurekids
Trains and Training: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 13 on DVD
Holiday from Hell: In Bruges on Blu-ray
The Comedy Stylings of Kurt Russell: Used Cars and Captain Ron
Robot Rocked: The Avengers Cybernauts Trilogy on Blu-ray
Hammer's Bloodthirsty Bad Girls 1970: Lust for a Vampire and Countess Dracula
Hammer to Fall: Kiss Me Deadly on Blu-ray
Home of the Grave: The House That Dripped Blood and Asylum on Blu-ray
   
 
  Suspect, The Would Any Jury Convict?Buy this film here.
Year: 1944
Director: Robert Siodmak
Stars: Charles Laughton, Ella Raines, Molly Lamont, Stanley Ridges, Henry Daniell, Rosalind Ivan, Dean Harens, Raymond Severn, Eve Amber, Maude Eburne, Clifford Brooke, John Berkes, Katherine York, Rebel Randall, Barbara Gray, Sheila Roberts, Edgar Norton
Genre: Drama, Thriller
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: It's London in 1902 and Philip Marshall (Charles Laughton) returns home from the office to find his son John (Dean Harens) packing his bags because he cannot stand the harping of his mother for one moment longer. Mrs Marshall (Rosalind Ivan) is a horrendous shrew who Philip has grown to despise over the years they have been married, and it seems the only good thing that came out of their union was John, who at least pays proper respect to his father and vice versa. Now he has moved out, Philip and his wife are barely tolerating each other - something has to give...

Robert Siodmak was something of a film noir expert from the heyday of such movies, so it might have been unusual to see him tackle material which did not really fit that template from his most admired era of moviemaking. Yes, there were thriller elements here, and some opportunities for excellent suspense sequences, but largely this was a melodrama concerned with how kindheartedness and decency could be twisted around by the wrong people, so that when faced with a man who is pure of heart like Philip it was that nobility of purpose that led him to operate like some kind of self-appointed reformer.

Here that reforming took the methods of murder to rid the world of terrible people, and Philip is played with such tenderness and understatement by Laughton - he was rarely better here and proved he needn't go way over the top to be effective - that it's hard not to warm to him. If he had decided to bump off someone otherwise innocent who had slighted him in some mundane fashion then it would be hard to endorse his actions, but Siodmak does something interesting here by making us side with, and see the sympathetic aspects of, a man who is essentually a killer. How does he wind up committing these crimes? Because he sees no way out of his situation other than to act as he does.

The impetus for this is not the fact that his son has left home and is now preparing to emigrate to Canada to get away from his mother, but that Philip has met another woman. He may be middle aged and nobody's idea of a great catch, but the understanding he shows Mary Gray (Ella Raines) who he helps to find a job when he has to turn her down at his own offices then finds her crying in the street that evening wins her over. They begin to meet up for nights out, which Mrs Marshall is unaware of or so Philip believes, and soon they are in love with his thoughts turning to divorce. However, when his other half reveals that she knows all about the meetings, which remain chaste incidentally, she makes it clear she will never let him go.

Faced with a life of misery, Philip does something drastic and we are supposed to see that there is one less horrible person in the world, which places us in an intriguing moral position as we are encouraged to view murder as a humane act, not for the victims but for those left behind who will feel so much the better for them not being around any more. The film doesn't appear to have a problem with this, never mind that Philip was so well-liked otherwise that whatever his wife would have said would not have ruined him, and the Scotland Yard detective (Stanley Ridges) assigned to investigate what Philip is passing off as an accident is seen as one of the villians of the piece, not explicitly, but because he will as much spoil the anti-hero's chances at happiness as the wife would - or Henry Daniell's wifebeating next door neighbour who turns blackmailer for that matter. Morally, The Suspect is a lot murkier than it looks, and skillfully presented into the bargain. Music by Frank Skinner.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2015 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 do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

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

 

Last Updated: