Another one by Alfred Hitchcock.

 It’s about a teenager named Charlie who wants some excitement in her life. Her namesake, Uncle Charlie, shows up and she is delighted.  He has been somewhere else and is different and dashing.  But later she begins to suspect that all is not right with Uncle Charlie.

The movie felt like it was based on a novel; it wasn’t.  Hitchcock and Thornton Wilder developed it.  It explores the possible corruption lurking under the simple, pleasant surface of small town USA.

Still, there were loose ends, like the psychic powers that showed up only when convenient to the story.

The mother appeared to be ditsy but she’s more aware of the world around her than I thought. I’m not sure what the precocious younger sister’s role was.  I think she was simply comic relief.  Charlie’s dad and the neighbor (Hume Cronyn) have a macabre interest in murder that is both funny and creepy.

I didn’t buy the ending as remotely plausible but I did appreciate its irony.

Despite all this negativity, I liked the movie.  I thought the setting was an interesting departure for Hitchcock and it is an intriguing idea.

It was like a precursor to Strangers on a Train which is my 3rd favorite Hitchcock movie. 

I think Shadow of a Doubt is definitely worth seeing.


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