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House by the River (1950)

Approved  |   |  Crime, Drama, Film-Noir  |  25 March 1950 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 1,714 users  
Reviews: 37 user | 21 critic

A deranged writer murders a maid after she resists his advances. The writer engages his brother's help in hiding the body, and then watches as the brother becomes the prime suspect.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Lee Bowman ...
John Byrne
...
Marjorie Byrne
Dorothy Patrick ...
Emily Gaunt
Ann Shoemaker ...
Mrs. Ambrose
Jody Gilbert ...
Flora Bantam
Peter Brocco ...
Harry - Coroner
Howland Chamberlain ...
District Attorney
Margaret Seddon ...
Mrs. Whittaker - Party Guest
Sarah Padden ...
Mrs. Beach
...
Effie Ferguson - Party Guest
...
Inspector Sarten
Leslie Kimmell ...
Mr. Gaunt
Effie Laird ...
Mrs. Gaunt
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Storyline

The unsuccessful writer Stephen Byrne tries to force his servant Emily Gaunt sexually while his wife Marjorie Byrne is visiting a friend and accidentally strangles her. His crippled brother John Byrne coincidently comes to his house in that moment, and Stephen asks him to help to get rid of the corpse and avoid an scandal, since his wife would be pregnant. The naive and good John helps his brother to dump the body in the river nearby his house. Stephen uses the disappearance of Emily to blame her and promote his book. When the body is found by the police, all the evidences points to John, and he becomes the prime suspect of the murder. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

brother | writer | murder | maid | river | See All (57) »

Taglines:

Enticing blonde beauty lures a lover's straying eyes ... See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 March 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Floodtide  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Fritz Lang originally wanted a black woman to play the role of Emily Gaunt but the producers refused. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Sociopath and the River
29 March 2006 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Intense period thriller about a writer, Stephen Byrne (played by Louis Hayward), who lives in - yeah, you guessed it - a house by the river; with lovely yard and gazebo, yet oddly dark as the film opens with the sky clouded, shadows cast across scenery, haunting music, a dead animal floating by on the glistening water, and a black widow spider crawling over his writing. We meet the attractive, blonde servant girl, Emily, who Stephen clearly has a lustful eye on from the get-go. By the next scene, he tries to kiss her coming down the stairs after bathing in his tub, and, well, she screams and he "accidentally" strangles her. With his brother assisting him, they put her body in a big sack and sink her in the river, then follows the cover-up of the murder.

Well, this film is quite interesting, dark and suspenseful - there's a lot going on here. The print I saw looked strikingly full of sharp black and white contrast. The photography in this makes the film menacing with blackened rooms lit only by candle light casting dark, sharp shadows across the walls, some extreme camera angles up stairs and down halls, shots of faces seen only in mirrors, extreme close-ups, and sweat dripping on the face of a nervous murderer.


11 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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