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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Director Edward Dmytryk was in the UK after being blacklisted as part of "The Hollywood Ten" who refused to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee. He was granted a work permit in the country by the Ministry of Labour as part of a "directors quota" in place to protect film industry jobs in the UK. See more »
Crew member with folded arms visible in the reflection of the car window when the Superintendant is sending his officers back the station. See more »
Dr. Clive Riordan:
Are you married, Mr. 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.
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For the young among us who only know Robert Newton as Long John Silver, his role as the psychiatrist in The Hidden Room aka Obsession is a revelation!
I have only just found this wonderful place to talk about films and I am thrilled to read that so many love The Hidden Room, as Obsession is called here, as much as I do.
Robert Newton has always been one of my favorite actors and it pleases me no end to discover his name on this thread.
When Newton made this film he was still interested in acting and it shows. There are subtle things that he does that are the hallmark of a great actor. His natural kindness comes through as well as his intelligence. You believe he really is this successful London psychiatrist with a wife who wanders.
The opening shot in the film establishes his character. There is tension in his casual posture at the card table. The viewer realizes that here is a man with his mind somewhere else. A troubled man, but one in perfect control of his surface emotions. Newton establishes in just a few shots a complex personality, a man capable of many actions.
Later there is a scene with the deaf butler that is both nerve-racking and sad.
My favorite scene is when he comes to visit his captive to bring him food. The way he instinctively walks just an inch beyond the reach of Bill. He is a tantalizing target for his victim, but just, just out of reach. To me a brilliant scene. A later, equally brilliant scene features the dog.
Another scene with many levels is the model train scene. Again as brilliant as anything Hitchcock ever presented to a viewer. As most of you know, Newton was in a very early Hitchcock film, Jamaica Inn. The Hidden Room is MUCH better.
Every chance I get, I show this film to friends, and without exception they say it is one of the best and most intense films they have ever seen. They wonder why it isn't better known. I have no answer to that. I am just grateful that I can visit that Hidden Room in the bombed-out building whenever I wish for some genuine chills.
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