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The Brighton Strangler

USA 1945
produced by
Herman Schlom, Sid Rogell (executive) for RKO
directed by Max Nosseck
starring John Loder, June Duprez, Michael St.Angel, Miles Mander, Rose Hobart, Gilbert Emery, Rex Evans, Matthew Boulton, Olaf Hytten, Lydia Bilbrook, Ian Wolfe
written by Arnold Phillips, Max Nosseck, additional dialogue by Hugh Gray, music by Leigh Harline, special effects by Vernon L.Walker

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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World War II-torn London: During the Blitz raid, famed stage actor Reginald Parker (John Loder) gets knocked out and suffers a concussion complete with selective amnesia - and when he comes to, he believes he's the titular character of the latest play he's been in, The Brighton Strangler ... so instead of going to Canterbury to marry his girlfriend Dorothy (Rose Hobart) - also the writer of his play - he goes to Brighton to murder those who he believes to be responsible for his downfall, the mayor (Ian Wolfe) and the chief of police (Miles Mander), both men who have of course never seen it since this is real life and they're not characters of Reginald's play. Reginald goes about this rather ingeniously though, using young and pretty April (June Duprez), a servicegirl he has met on the train to Brighton, as his cover, a girl he uses him as an alibi to meet Bob (Michael St.Angel), the man she has secretly married. Bob of course has grown suspicious of Reginald since day one, but hey, he just needed him anyways. But then he finds out Reginald is only the famed actor of the play The Brighton Strangler, and he puts two and two together, gets in touch with Dorothy, and ... well, Reginald was just about to kill April when Dorothy can bring his memory of who he actually is back - but he still has to fall of the roof of a hotel where he wanted to strangle April to repent for his sins ... otherwise everything ends happily, though.


Quite a few nice ideas, a macabre set-up and exciting suspense scenes ultimately amount to less than they ought to because the film's premise (an actor believing to be his signature character) just isn't believable enough (or at least isn't presented in a believable enough way), thus it makes little sense and doesn't manage to keep up the tension needed to really hammer its story home.

Now don't get me wrong, the film is far from a trainwreck, and for a routine programmer it's actually pretty decent - it just ... well, could have been much better.


review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD