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The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog

The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog

  • Category: Thriller (Silent)
  • Year: 1927
  • Company: Gainsborough Pictures
  • Running time: 75 minutes (UK); 83 minutes (US)
  • Marie Ault as Mrs. Bunting, the Landlady
  • Arthur Chesney as Mr. Bunting
  • June as their daughter, Daisy Bunting
  • Malcolm Keen as Joe Chandler, a Police Detective, boyfriend of Daisy Bunting
  • Ivor Novello as, Jonathan Drew, the Lodger
Alfred Hitchcock
Producer: Michael Balcon
Screenplay: Marie Belloc Lowndes (novel), Eliot Stannard
Cinematographer: Baron Venitimiglia


The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog often just called The Lodger was a 1927 silent film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Based on a story by Marie Adelaide Lowndes, the sister of Hilaire Belloc, this was the third film he had directed, but it was the first film he made a cameo in. It is also the first "Hitchcock Style" film.

Despite all the effort that Hitchcock put into the film, producer Michael Balcon was furious with the end result and nearly shelved the film--and Hitchcock's career as well. After considerable bickering, a compromise was reached and film critic Ivor Montagu was hired to salvage the film. Hitchcock was initially resentful of the intrusion, but Montagu recognized the director's technical skill and artistry and made only minor suggestions, mostly concerning the title cards and the reshooting of a few minor scenes.

The result, described by Hitchcock scholar Donald Spoto, is "the first time Hitchcock has revealed his psychological attraction to the association between sex and murder, between ecstasty and death." It would pave the way for his later work.

The story is about a Jack the Ripper-type murderer in London, who has been killing blonde young women. A couple who has a daughter with blonde hair has recently rented a room to a mysterious man, whom in time they begin to suspect as being the murderer called the 'Avenger'.