This is a cracking British film with a superb cast. It doesn’t seem particularly Hitchcockian though despite these familiar names.
Charles Laughton is brilliant (as always). He had this ability to keep this side of ridiculous.
There are also a couple of other potential hams keeping to the right side: Leslie Banks and Robert Newton. In truth, Robert Newton (who I’m not a fan of) is actually rather bland. The role doesn’t help. Leslie Banks may have preferred not to have his face mutilated during the Great War but he made the most of it.
The rest of the cast is an impressive list of British actors: Marie Ney, Emlyn Williams (looking rather fetching in his gypsy get up), Basil Radford, Wylie Watson, et al. However, it is the Irish Maureen O’Hara who really shines. She is stunning looking (but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the actor is interesting) but she was a commanding presence despite her youth (19 I assume). Unfortunately, I associate her with John Wayne and the disagreeable The Quiet Man.
The model work during the wreck was most impressive and the inn was an interesting though stagy looking set.
The film suffered from a compressed adaptation of the original material (of the bestseller by Daphne du Maurier). Mary’s attitude felt forced - after all she hardly knew the people she was angry with Jem for giving up to the authorities.
Alma fact: continuity
Transport: ships, carts Animals: horses
Source: La Taverne de la Jamaique - Universal (France)
Thanks to 1000 Frames of Hitchcock.