7.4/10
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26 user 9 critic

The Hidden Room (1949)

Obsession (original title)
Approved | | Crime, Thriller | 8 January 1950 (USA)
Clive Riordan plans a devilish revenge against his wife's lover.

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Writers:

(book), (screenplay)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Phil Brown ...
Sally Gray ...
Storm Riordan
Naunton Wayne ...
Supt. Finsbury
James Harcourt ...
Aitkin (butler)
Betty Cooper ...
Miss Stevens (receptionist)
Michael Balfour ...
American sailor
Ronald Adam ...
Clubman
Roddy Hughes ...
Clubman
Allan Jeayes ...
Clubman
Olga Lindo ...
Mrs. Humphries
Russell Waters ...
Flying Squad detective
Lyonel Watts ...
Clubman (as Lionel Watts)
Sam Kydd ...
Club steward
Monty the Dog ...
Monty - Storm's Dog
Edit

Storyline

London psychiatrist Clive Riordan, royally fed up with the repeated affairs of his wife Storm, plots a seemingly 'perfect' revenge against her latest lover, American Bill Kronin. Catching them in the act, he marches Bill off at gunpoint; and from the viewpoint of Storm and the rest of the world, Bill simply vanishes. But there's far more to the meticulously worked out plot than Clive's victims suspect, with the end slowly preparing in his private laboratory. Enter a mild-mannered Scotland Yard man, who seemingly has no clue beyond a missing dog... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Whose eye could see... Whose ear could hear... Whose mind could know... the Secret! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 January 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Hidden Room  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The inspector's pipe jumps from his mouth to his hand as he departs the doctor's garage. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Clive Riordan: Are you married, Mr. Finsbury?
Supt. Finsbury: No... I've often thought about it. Trouble is, I've thought about it so long, I'm afraid I've missed the bus.
Dr. Clive Riordan: Just one of life's little jokes, isn't it?... It points out our mistakes too late for us to profit by them.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Destination Murder (1950) See more »

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User Reviews

visually and psychologically claustrophobic
30 July 2001 | by (Amsterdam, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

Why only 29 votes when it is presumably inspiration for Vertigo, even written by the same author (Alec Coppel) and with music by probably the greatest (besides Ennio Morricone and Philip Glass) composer in cinema Nino Rota (Godfather, Amarcord, 8 1/2, Il Gattopardo)? Vertigo seems like a degenerated 'Obsession' to me. Brian De Palma's Obsession (1976) was probably inspired by Hitchcock's Vertigo (1958), which was probably inspired by Dmytryk's masterpiece Obsession. This thriller surpasses most Hitchcocks. The suspense is gruesome, the music is memorable, the great cinematography by Pennington-Richards (Scrooge (1970?), 1984 (1956)) is dynamic and claustrophobic and the performance of Phil Brown as 'Bill' is more interesting than any character of James Stewart or Cary Grant. There is a lot of psychological terror, but what else would you expect from a fight between a psychiatrist and a diplomat? 'When a man's intelligence is insulted he is reduced to the most insensible and uncivilized behaviour.' Universal Pictures must have kept this hidden treasure securely hidden to prevent the success of Vertigo of fading out. This should have been a classic and will be one day. The black-list-era should have been over by now, don't you think?

9/10


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