Little seen since its original release, stylishly shot in Winchester and Southampton by Academy Award-winner Kenneth Higgins (Georgy Girl) and co-starring Ian Ogilvy (Witchfinder General), this striking psychological thriller based on Maigret creator Georges Simenon’s celebrated novel is ripe for rediscovery.
Once an eminent barrister, John Sawyer (James Mason) has become a cynical, reclusive drunk, long deserted by his wife, baffled by the burgeoning youth culture and held in contempt by his daughter, Angela (Geraldine Chaplin). But when her boyfriend is wrongfully accused of murder, Sawyer must confront his demons and a changing world in order to defend him.
The 37th release in the BFI Flipside strand, Stranger in the House is presented on Blu-ray and DVD in a Dual Format Edition. A stack of archival extras include photographer David Bailey’s 1966 film G.G. Passion, a psychedelic 1968 advert for coffee, an interview with James Mason, a new commentary and an illustrated booklet.
Presented in High Definition and Standard Definition
G.G. Passion (David Bailey, 1966, 25 mins): a pop singer is hounded to death in this fab film featuring Chrissie Shrimpton and Caroline Munro
Good Strong Coffee (c1968, 2 mins): swingers swig coffee in this psychedelic ad for the black stuff
Tram Journey Through Southampton (c1900, 1 min)
Charlie Chaplin Sails From Southampton (1921, 1 min)
Southampton Docks (1964, 24 mins): marvellous mod machinery at work on a merchant vessel
Original theatrical trailer
James Mason in Conversation (1981, 86 mins, audio only): the actor discusses his career in an interview at the National Film Theatre, London
Newly recorded audio commentary by Flipside founders Vic Pratt and William Fowler