The Night of the Hunter

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MGM Released 1955

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Movie Summary

Director:
Charles Laughton
Released:
1955
Rating:
Not Available
The Night of the Hunter is the 1955 psychological thriller adapted from the classic novel by Davis Grubb, and the only feature film directed by venerated and iconic actor Charles Laughton (Spartacus, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Mutiny on the Bounty). Ben Harper (Peter Graves) arrives home one day trailed by police officers for having robbed a bank. He entrusts the money to his son John and daughter Pearl, swearing them to secrecy Vis a Vis its location and is captured and taken away to be hung. In prison, Ben shares a cell with homicidal and psychopathic Reverend Harry Powell (Robert Mitchum, Cape Fear) ' a woman hating nut who resolves to go after Ben's bereaved family to possibly locate the hidden booty. But upon his arrival, young John immediately begins to suspect something's not quite right with Mr. Powell, despite everyone being instantly won over by his seemingly God-given charm. Soon, he and Pearl are on the run for their lives as Harry tirelessly pursues them for the money Ben hid in his little girl's doll.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    One of the greatest of all American films, but has never received the attention it deserves because of its lack of the proper trappings. Many "great movies'' are by great directors...

  • 100

    San Francisco Chronicle Edward Guthmann

    Part fairy tale and part bogeyman thriller -- a juicy allegory of evil, greed and innocence, told with an eerie visual poetry.

  • 60

    Variety

    This start for Gregory as producer and Laughton as director is rich in promise but the completed product, bewitching at times, loses sustained drive via too many offbeat touches th...

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    Categories

    Drama, Suspense

    Themes

    Thrillers, Crime, 50s, Detectives, Film Noir