The Gazette, Colorado Springs


The Night of the Hunter (1955) TCM, 8 p.m. Robert Mitchum is absolutely chilling as tattoo-knuckled, corrupt religious fanatic/ serial killer Harry Powell, one of the screen’s most unforgettable villains, in Charles Laughton’s superb 1955 thriller, the only film Laughton, most remembered as an actor, directed. In the movie, Powell marries a fragile widow (Shelley Winters) to try to learn where her late husband hid a large sum of cash from a robbery. When his plans are uncovered by her terrified young children (Billy Chapin and Sally Jane Bruce), it begins a pursuit that becomes a mesmerizing allegory for the battle between good and evil. Lillian Gish co-stars in a terrific performance. The Night of the Hunter is one of those classics that were not recognized as such during the time of their release, flopping with critics and audiences. Over the decades, its reputation has grown, and it is now considered one of the greatest films ever made; it was selected for preservation in the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry in 1992.