I love silent films. I really, really do. Since studying film many years ago, the silent genre has always held a special place in my heart...and my DVD collection. My favourite? The Man Who Laughs. If you can get your hands on a copy, I highly recommend it.
So when I got tickets to see The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog, one of Alfred Hitchcock's early silent films, at the BFI with a live piano accompaniment, needless to say I was very excited. I had seen this film many years ago, but I don't think I fully appreciated how brilliant and important it was.
Loosely based on the story of Jack the Ripper, The Lodger is quite a thriller - a serial killer known as "The Avenger" is on the loose in London, murdering fair haired women. Around the same time, a mysterious man arrives at the house of Mr. and Mrs. Bunting, looking for a room to rent...could he be "The Avenger"? And is Daisy, their beautiful fair haired daughter, his next victim?
The Lodger arrives...
If you haven't seen this film already, you must. And if you can see it with a live piano accompaniment, then all the better.
Anyway, all of this is in aid of the work the BFI National Archive are doing to "Rescue the Hitchcock 9". To quote from their website, curators of the BFI National Archive have identified a collection of films in desperate need of restoration with nine of Alfred Hitchcock's early silent films being the first to seek rescue through the Support the BFI campaign. Hitchcock's nine surviving silent films are among the most important in British cinema history. But decades of wear and tear have left them in urgent need of restoration.
The BFI needs our help to bring these rare films back from the brink of destruction and into the digital age so that future generations can watch and enjoy. As a huge Hitchcock fan myself, I'll definitely be sparing a few pounds. Every little helps, so if you can afford to give a little something, anything, then please do.
Visit the dedicated donation page now and help save Hitchock!