In Cornwall, 1819, a young woman discovers she's living near a gang of criminals who arrange shipwrecks for profit.In Cornwall, 1819, a young woman discovers she's living near a gang of criminals who arrange shipwrecks for profit.In Cornwall, 1819, a young woman discovers she's living near a gang of criminals who arrange shipwrecks for profit.
- Ringwood - Sir Humphrey's Friendas Ringwood - Sir Humphrey's Friend
- (as Bromley Davenport)
The story holds some possibilities. At the beginning, we find out that there is an old inn along the coast of Cornwall, which serves as the meeting place for a gang of criminals, who deliberately cause shipwrecks and then rob and kill the survivors. O'Hara is the niece of the innkeepers, who comes to stay with them and then gradually discovers the inn's sinister secrets. This gives rise to a melodramatic series of chases, escapes, and showdowns in the inn and along the nearby seacoast.
Unfortunately, the pacing is quite irregular and often too slow, and some of the more fast-paced scenes sometimes seem implausible. Just as one example, there are too many times when someone slips away solely because whoever is doing the chasing forgets to look in a rather obvious place. There are also not enough interesting characters. O'Hara is good, and Charles Laughton is entertaining as Sir Humphrey. But Laughton over-plays his role for all it is worth, and he swallows up most of the other characters. There are some pretty good actors in the rest of the cast, who just don't get very much to do.
There are still some interesting developments, and a couple of decent twists. Hitchcock fans will probably still want to see "Jamaica Inn" at least once. But it is hardly one of the director's better films, and not really good enough to be of more general interest.
- Snow Leopard
- Jun 8, 2001