2007 is the centenary year of both Laurence Olivier and Daphne du Maurier. Widower de Winter (Olivier) meets his future wife (Joan Fontaine) in Monte Carlo and takes her to Manderley, where she must live in the shadow of his first wife. “The sheer, swooning pleasure that this film affords – its melodrama, its romance, its extravagant menace – makes it a must-see” (Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian). (131 mins)
Dir: Alfred Hitchcock, USA 1940


“Good old-fashioned film with some nice twists. It could with advantage have been shortened a bit.”

“Fun to see Hitchcock’s earlier work (rather) than the more familiar stuff … fun to spot the touches that later became his ‘signature’.”

“Far more humour than I remembered – great Waxman score and expressionist lighting.”

“Great acting – there’s no blaze like home!”

“Tosh … I just hope he was insured for fire.”

“What a brilliant oversimplification of the English class system. All the major decisions made by four people on the pavement!”

“Excellent film – shame about the second projector’s sound problems.”

“That took you back. A story full of holes, rotten special effects, crackling sound, not a proper accent in sight – and lots of projector noise. Lovely! And a diver wouldn’t go down in that weather (either)!”

“Not quite gothic enough – neither ought or nought.”


A:22, B:9, C:4, D:0, E:0 to give 88%