An idealistic rookie cop joins the LAPD to make ends meet while finishing law school, and is indoctrinated by a seasoned veteran. As time goes on, he loses his ambitions and family as police work becomes his entire life.
George C. Scott,
London, 1949. John Christie is an unassuming, middle-aged man who, along with his wife Ethel, lives in the ground-floor flat at 10 Rillington Place. His demeanor masks the fact of being a serial killer. His modus operandi is to act as a person with a medical background, lure unsuspecting women to his apartment on the pretense of curing them of some ailment, knock them unconscious with carbon monoxide gas, gain his sexual release through contact with the unconscious body, then strangle the victim dead before disposing of the body somewhere in the house or outside area. His next intended target is Beryl Evans, a young woman who has just moved into the top flat in the house. Beryl's husband, Tim Evans, is an illiterate man who likes to put on airs. Already with an infant daughter named Geraldine, the Evanses learn they are going to have another baby, which they cannot afford to have, nor can they afford to abort the pregnancy. This problem, on top of the constant issue of lack of money ...Written by
Bernard Lee originally appeared as "Inspector J" (based on the real-life Chief Inspector Jennings), though his scenes were cut from the finished movie. See more »
The position of the manhole cover changes from shot to shot when the police lift its lid after Evans' "confession" - first it is seen (as it was in real life) in the middle of the road opposite No.10 with the front door to the house closed, but in the next close-up shot we see it being lifted up from a position in front of a bay window from a house further down the street, with the front door of (supposedly) No.10 open See more »
I saw this in a theatre here in the United States in 1971, when I was eleven years old. I'd seen Richard Attenborough as the circus master in DOCTOR DOLITTLE and I wonder if I'd sold my mother on taking me to this one because I knew the name Richard Attenborough. In any case, this movie burned itself into my brain immediately and, for the next three decades I told many of my fellow American film-buffs that there was this British movie no American had ever heard about that was more blood-curdling than PSYCHO. I suspect the obviously limited release of this movie in the United States had something to do with the fact that one of its chief selling-points was that it was based on a murder not well-known to Americans. The Christie murders were famous in Britain, and, in fact, historic because of their effect on the elimination of the UK's death penalty. But the distributors in America had to market this on its qualities as a thriller. Attenborough had yet to make his name a household word here, GHANDI being about ten years in the future and the probable difficulty with accents couldn't have made people who did see it very eager to recommend it. On top of this, the movie is not a thriller but a truly disturbing exploration of evil. It makes the roughly contemporary FRENZY look like a sitcom. Movies became more realistic in the late sixties and early seventies than they have been before or since. 10 RILLINGTON PLACE may be the most realistic movie about a serial killer ever made. It may not be the scariest, but it's the most memorable. I haven't forgotten it, and I haven't seen it in more than a generation. It is a mournful movie for serious viewing.
82 of 84 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this