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The Unholy Four aka A Stranger Came Home
Hammer Film Noir Double Feature Collector?s Set 2
Hammer Film Noir Double Feature Volume 7
Paulette Goddard, William Sylvester, Patrick Holt
Directed by Terence Fisher
Black and white 1954
VCI Entertainment 2007
A man comes home and everybody except his dog is pretty much surprised to see him since he was murdered three years ago. Soon after that, the suspects in his death start dying off themselves. This is the premise of The Unholy Four aka A Stranger Came Home, one of the two mystery movies on DVD Volume 7 of the Hammer Film Noir Collection. This British noir mystery is based on Stranger At Home by George Sanders.
William Sylvester plays Philip Vickers, the original murder victim of The Unholy Four, and Paulette Goddard plays his wife. Russell Napier plays Inspector Treherne, the man in charge of finding out who is killing the usual suspects in the Vickers murder. Sylvester is pretty good in The Unholy Four aka A Stranger Came Home as the stiff upper lip, not revealing much, rather mysterious man who has come back from the dead. This pretty much makes sense since someone is still trying to kill him but also makes his growing anger and paranoia that much more believable.
The Unholy Four is not the best mystery DVD in Hammer Film Noir 4 DVD 8 movies set. It is a fairly static mystery, a cozy of sorts, as most everything takes place on the Vickers property: most of the investigation, all of the confrontations, and some of the discussions between two of Vickers’ business associates, one of which is blackmailing the other, and the subsequent murders.
It is also not the freshest looking mystery movie in this black and white film noir box set. The picture is a bit yellowish and you will see some faint strobing or pulsing from time to time. From the scene where Vickers gets angry and tries to strangle Bill, the American character, the movie has a lot of snap, crackle, pop in it.