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: Brit Noir: The Hypnotist (1957)  ( 186 )
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« : November 10, 2017, 03:31:58 PM »

 DVD 6

* This review may contain spoilers ***

Learning of a sale on UK DVD company Network's page,I quickly looked for titles to pick up. Previously seeing him in the very good British Film Noir The Dark Man,I was pleased to spot another Noir co- starring William Hartnell, which led to me getting hypnotised.

The plot:

Hurt doing a test run, pilot Valentine Neal becomes haunted by past events in his life. Wanting to help her boyfriend, Mary Foster arranges for Neal to meet psychiatrist Doctor Francis Pelham. Hypnotising Neal,Pelham begins to explore his dark childhood memories. Finding Neal easy to hypnotise,Pelham decides to put Neal in a trance for his own use.

View on the film:

Bringing the title out of a trance,Network deliver an excellent transfer,with pristine sound and picture quality. Adapting Falkland L. Cary's play,the screenplay by writer/director Montgomery Tully partakes in an impressive level of psychological depth, as gripping exchanges between Pelham and Neal dig up the Noir horrors laying in Neal's sub-conscious. Giving Neal ambiguous shakes,Tully disappointing calms things down far too early,with the mysterious doubt between Neal and Pelham being explained 20 minutes before the end. Gliding round on the streets of late 1950's London,Tully sets his sights on glimpses on Film Noir stylisation,via shots spanning Neal's flat,and icy flashbacks unveiling the inner workings of Neal.

Playing a similar role to the one in The Dark Man, William Hartnell gives a good, gruff performance as Detective Inspector Ross,whilst the very pretty Patricia Roc gives a clever performance as Mary Foster,who raises questions to how helpful Pelham is being to Neal. Playing off each other, Roland Culver & Paul Carpenter give great performances,as Culver gives Pelham an unsettling,calculating calm,and Carpenter brings out the hypnotised fears of Neal.

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« #1 : November 14, 2017, 03:24:12 AM »

Agreed on your rating, this one's nothing amazing, altho it has plenty of familiar and always dependable British faces in the cast. If you want to see another Hartnell Britnoir, I can recommend Appointment With Crime (1946) in which he stars in likely his most bitter and unlikeable role as a framed criminal looking for revenge.

'I feel all dead inside. I'm backed up in a dark corner and I don't know who's hitting me.' - The Dark Corner (1946)
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