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Rosemary La Planche,
London, 1888: on the night of the third Jack the Ripper killing, soft-spoken Mr. Slade, a research pathologist, takes lodgings with the Harleys, including a gloomy attic room for "experiments." Mrs. Harley finds Slade odd and increasingly suspects the worst; her niece Lily (star of a decidedly Parisian stage revue) finds him interesting and increasingly attractive. Is Lily in danger, or are her aunt's suspicions merely a red herring?Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
Fairly stylish and suspenseful 50's remake of "The Lodger", a story set during Jack the Ripper's reign of terror in London near the end of the 19th century. In one of his earliest film roles, the tall and handsome Jack Palance portrays a quiet and introvert pathologist on the lookout for a room in the center of London. He finds one in the house of Helen and William Harley where he spends most of the time working in the attic. His behavior becomes increasingly strange, especially when he falls in love with the singer/showgirl niece of his landlords. Suspicions arise that the distinguished Mr. Slade is the feared maniac Jack the Ripper. There's very little action in "Man in the Attic", but it's atmospheric and both acted & directed with devotion. Palance looks menacing and mysterious and he receives excellent feedback from his supportive cast, most notably from Rhys Williams as the cynical Mr. Harley. Too bad the film also features two overlong cabaret-like musical sequences, which are really misplaced, and I personally would have preferred some more info and details regarding the Ripper-killings. Not for nowadays horror-audiences, but worth a look in case you're a fan of classy, tension-driven thrillers.
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