A Cottage on Dartmoor | Chicago Reader

A Cottage on Dartmoor

During the silent era, British director Anthony Asquith was considered Alfred Hitchcock's equal, and this excellent working-class melodrama (1930) demonstrates how skillfully he could tell a story through images. Norah Baring, a haunting beauty who disappeared from the screen a few years later, plays a Devonshire manicurist who spurns the romantic attentions of a hairdresser at her salon but then falls for an affable customer (Hans Adalbert Schlettow). A superb pictorialist, Asquith makes elegant use of the workplace with its multiple mirrors, and the midpoint of the film is an electrifying montage in which the jealous barber, played by Uno Henning, is assailed by memories of his beloved as he spies on her at the movies. 88 min.

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