Hitchcock claimed that, after The Lodger, this is the next ‘Hitchcock’ picture. It’s difficult to disagree. The story of an unsophisticated fairground boxer whose girlfriend falls for the charms of a professional Australian fighter is told with innumerable expressionist visual flourishes, probably attributable to the time Hitchcock had spent in Germany. The title itself is ambivalent, referring to the boxing ring, the wedding ring and the serpentine bracelet secretly given by the Australian champ. This is Hitchcock’s one and only original screenplay but its neatness and economy reveal a director already confident in his control of the medium. —Festival de Cannes
Alfred Hitchcock has been the most well-known director to the general public since the 1940s – and he remains so in the 21st century, more than 25 years after his death. His name evokes instant expectations on the part of audiences around the world: of a memorable night of movie-watching highlighted by at least two or three great chills (and a few more good ones), some striking black comedy, and an eccentric characterization or two in virtually every one of the director’s movies across a half-century – and usually laced with a comical cameo appearance by the director himself.
Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born into a devoutly Catholic family in London, and his religious upbringing – with its attendant issues of guilt – would have a powerful influence on the psychological underpinnings of his later work. He was trained at a technical school, and initially gravitated to movies through art courses and advertising. He studied the work of other filmmakers, most notably the German expressionists… read more
When Hitchcock is playing with the images in this silent film of his, such as using superimpositions, it is a sight to behold. The moment the plot takes over however everything grinds to a halt. I have a lot of Hitchcock films to see, but while Vertigo and Psycho could combine these two aspects comfortably, this feels like it was practice for him.