Monday, January 9, 2012

Day 264 - Young and Innocent

Young and Innocent (1938) directed by Alfred Hitchcock

Young and Innocent is an early and pleasing entry into Alfred Hitchcock's filmography. It tells the story of a man who stumbles upon a dead woman and is accused of murdering her. Determined to prove his innocence, he flees from custody to find the real murderer with the help of a woman he meets. It is part chase thriller and part romance and mostly entertaining showcasing some of the promise of Hitchcock's later works.

The beginning parts of the movie are a little slow as I found the romance angle a little formulaic, but I understand why it is there. The thriller element starts off a little slow too but picks up steam nicely. There are a couple sequences that I really liked. In one scene there is a an impressive set piece inside of a mine that looks like a scene straight out of an Indiana Jones movie. In the most Hitchcockian moment, the protagonists enter a ballroom looking for the killer. It begins with a wide shot overseeing the entire room and zooms into a close-up of the killer who is the drummer of the band. It zooms all the way to his twitching eyes, the only clue to identifying him. A really well done shot that is classic Hitchcock.

Overall Young and Innocent is a solid thriller with some really nice moments. It isn't Hitchcock's best work but I'll gladly take one of Hitchcock's middling works over most people's bests.

Grade: B

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