ming movie reviews

in about 100 words or less

Strangers on a Train (1951)

US 101m, B&W
Director: Alfred Hitchcock; Cast: Farley Granger, Ruth Roman, Robert Walker, Leo G. Carroll,
Patricia Hitchcock, Laura Elliott

As a suspenseful thriller, Strangers on a Train is one of Hitchcock’s finest productions, albeit one of his lesser known.  The film is based upon a novel of the same name by Patricia Highsmith, who also wrote The Talented Mr. Ripley, which has a similar feel and tone. The story involves Guy Haines, a tennis pro who is manipulated by Bruno Anthony – a psychotic young man who proposes that they should “exchange murders” in order that Guy can escape a failed marriage and that Bruno can escape his father’s control. Thinking that Bruno’s proposal is nothing more than a joke, Guy is shocked to learn that the police want to question him about his wife’s death. In addition to a most interesting screenplay, which includes Hitchcock’s offbeat black humour, Strangers on a Train is film noir at its technical best – beautifully photographed with great plot twists and double crosses – which continue to amuse and entertain (Klaus Ming October 2010).


2 comments on “Strangers on a Train (1951)

  1. joem18b

    i remember this one striking me as just a little goofy. don’t remember why. maybe because of the way robert walker was nuts in it. i also had stewart granger and farley granger confused with each other and spent some time musing about that as i watched, and about the fact that walker was destined for stardom but then died young. 😦

    • Klaus

      hee, hee…I agree, Walker’s performance is over the top – and so is what happened to him…although I bought it for the sake of the story, which I think was the real strength of the film.

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This entry was posted on 10/20/2010 by in 1001 List, 1950s, All and tagged .
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