The Stranger

Director: Orson Welles
Country/ Year: USA 1946

Loretta Young’s unsuspecting wife is closer too the enemy than she imagines. Much closer than Edward G. Robinson’s title figure, who peaks behind the small town facade and that of her husband.

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Silent Night, Bloody Night

Director: Theodore Gershuny
Country/ Year: USA 1974

Some houses are evil, wrote Shirley Jackson. Too bad John Carradine and the Factory members visiting the creepy Butler home never read her. Santa brings some Madness, murder and perversion.

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The Second Woman

Director: James V. Kern
Country/ Year: USA 1950

Guilt-ridden over the accidental death of his fiancee, Robert Young’s architect believes he is cursed. His shrink is about to diagnose him with insanity, while his girl notices some suspicious details.

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Cause for Alarm!

Director: Tay Garnett
Country/ Year: USA 1951

An incriminating letter, which Loretta Young’s seemingly proper housewife has to retain, drives the ambiguous suspense flick, which darkly hints at the pathological backside of suburbian cleanliness.

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Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon

Director: Roy William Neill
Country/ Year: USA 1943

Arthur Conan Doyle would have marveled at his detective donning a nazi uniform; of course, only as ploy to protect the titular McGuffin. Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce and Lionell Atwill shine out.

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British Intelligence

Director: Terry O.Morse
Country/ Year: USA 1940

Nationalities, identities and loyalties change hasty among Boris Karloff and the others protagonists of the decent spy flick, that takes the infiltration of the home as metaphor for that of the country.

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The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Country/ Year: UK 1934

22 years senior to the classic US remake, Hitchcock’s clever spy story evokes a rather different feel of ruthlessness, cunning and cynism. German expatriate Peter Lorre learned his lines phonetically.

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Whispering City

Director: Fyodor Ostep
Country/ Year: Canada 1947

A penchant for death and darkness, may it be moral obscurity or that of the mind: that is what the disparaging characters of the formidable murder triangle share and scheeme about.

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Director: Ralph Brooke
Country/ Year: USA 1959

Two years after its completion, the pale reinterpretation of “The Most Dangerous Game” trading in metaphors for meretriciousness and shivers for shocks, hit movie theaters – and totally missed.

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Fear in the Night

Director: Maxwell Shane
Country/ Year: USA 1947

“Nightmare” Cornell Woolrich aptly retitled his story of a bank teller, who’s dream of self-imposed murder becomes harrowing reality. Lacks in suspense are well settled by a gloomily symbolic air.

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