Red House, The (1947)

The Red House (1947), directed by Delmer Daves.

An older brother and sister live in a remote farmhouse with their -- niece? When she begins to see a boy the young people are warned to stay out of the woods and away from a mysterious house -- "You don't want to hear the screaming in the night". The uncle seems deranged by the topic and soon begins confusing the niece with her mother. And that's not good.

This rural noir thriller has great visual composition and spooky mood, and a typically fine Miklós Rózsa score. Edward G. Robinson again shows that he can do anything. Allene Roberts is appealing as the waifish niece. This is her first picture and she had only a brief acting career.

On the down side: it's a bit long for the material and the revelations are not that mysterious. The love interests of the four young people tend to drag, although Julie London is easy on the eyes.

Robinson had 112 film credits was never even nominated for an Academy Award. How can that be? He received an honorary award in 1973.

Available on Blu-ray from HD Cinema Classics. No English subtitles. The title is in the public domain and I also have it on one of those pathetic Madacy 3-titles-on-one-DVD combos.

A restoration demo on the Blu-ray shows they were able to clean up the image and improve the contrast, but the resolution is about the same as before, no better than DVD quality. Noise reduction has blurred out whatever extra detail might have been available in the source, but at least it does not have the gross artifacts of Dementia 13 (1963) from the same label.

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