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Gregory read the novel The Night of the Hunter by Davis Grubb and decided to produce a film from it, with James Agee as screenwriter and Laughton as director.
Laughton drew on the harsh, angular look of German expressionist films of the s. Casting[ edit ] Laughton considered casting Gary Cooper as Harry Powell, but Cooper did not accept the role as it might be detrimental to his career.
Robert Mitchum was eager for the part of the preacher. When he auditioned, a moment that particularly impressed Charles Laughton was when Laughton described the character as "a diabolical shit" and Mitchum promptly answered, "Present!
Winters said that this was "the most thoughtful and reserved performance I ever gave". Laughton envisioned his wife Elsa Lanchester to play the role of Rachel Cooper.
Lanchester, for reasons unknown to Laughton, turned down the role, suggesting silent movie legend Lillian Gish for the role instead.
A doubtful Laughton went to New York for the purpose of watching films that Gish starred in. These included the shorts and feature films she made with pioneer D. When Gish asked Laughton[ clarification needed ], he replied, "When I first went to the movies, they sat in their seats straight and leaned forward.
Now they slump down, with their heads back, and eat candy and popcorn. I want them to sit up straight again. Note the placement of the key light off the subject Lillian Gish to create a silhouette while illuminating Robert Mitchum in the background.
This plays off the conventional association of light with good and darkness with evil. Lee ranch in the San Fernando Valley. A recurring musical device involves the preacher making his presence known by singing the traditional hymn " Leaning on the Everlasting Arms ".
Mitchum also recorded the soundtrack version of the hymn. Grubb had to be carried through by Mr. Laughton to a finish—and it is here that he goes wrong. For the evolution of the melodrama, after the threatened, frightened children flee home, angles off into that allegorical contrast of the forces of Evil and Good.
This start for Gregory as producer and Laughton as director is rich in promise but the completed product, bewitching at times, loses sustained drive via too many offbeat touches that have a misty effect.This description shows the absolute essence of the preacher's character in Davis Grubb's The Night of the Hunter.
The preacher's real intentions are the hate of the left hand, and he rationalizes his evil through the false facade of the love of the right hand.
Night of the Hunter opens in the stars, where Rachel Cooper (Lillian Gish) tells the children (and the audience) a Southern Gothic parable regarding the importance of childhood and the dangers of "wolves in sheep's" clothing. Nov 21, · Night of the hunter essay. Wastage of time essay archives alan terry dissertations juvenile tried as adults essay writing mother tongue amy tan essay summary statement research paper or report alan terry dissertations.
Agee must have been surprised, then, at the performance Mitchum gave in Agee’s script from Davis Grubb’s novel, THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER.
In THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER, Mitchum plays "‘Preacher’ Harry Powell" a charismatic pretender who seduces and murders in order to get at a fortune stashed by a convict named Harper. In short, The Night of the Hunter is an American movie classic.
It is also an utter original. This sense of originality was largely lost on movie audiences when The Night of the Hunter was first released in “The Night of the Hunter” Anna N. Beach Paper #1 March 7, “The Night of The Hunter” is a thriller written by Davis Grubb in It is imaginably chilling and disturbing.
The book is based upon a true story of a frightening man who was hung for murdering two women and three children.