The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog (often just called The Lodger) was a 1927 silent film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It is based on a story of the same name by Marie Adelaide Lowndes about a fictional version of the Jack The Ripper killings. The book itself was allegedly based on an anecdote told to the painter Walter Sickert by his landlady when renting a room; she said that the previous tenant had been Jack the Ripper. This was the third film Hitchcock directed and the first he made a cameo in. It is also the prototypical “Hitchcockian” film.
Despite all the effort that Hitchcock put into the film, producer Michael Balcon was furious with the end result and nearly shelved the film – and Hitchcock’s career as well. After considerable bickering, a compromise was reached and film critic Ivor Montagu was hired to salvage the film. Hitchcock was initially resentful of the intrusion, but Montagu recognized the director’s technical skill and artistry and made only minor suggestions, mostly concerning the title cards and the reshooting of a few minor scenes.
The result, described by Hitchcock scholar Donald Spoto, is “the first time Hitchcock has revealed his psychological attraction to the association between sex and murder, between ecstasy and death.” It would pave the way for his later work.
Language:Silent (with mono piano score)
Subtitles:Original English innertitles + optional German subs (SUB/IDX)