“I run to death, and death meets me as fast, and all my pleasures are like yesterday.” Join this episode’s Grue-Crew – Whitney Collazo, Chad Hunt, Daphne Monary-Ernsdorff, Joseph Perry, and Jeff Mohr – as they journey once more to the dark world of Val Lewton with The Seventh Victim (1943).
Decades of Horror: The Classic Era
Episode 97 – The Seventh Victim (1943)
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A woman in search of her missing sister uncovers a Satanic cult in New York’s Greenwich Village, and finds that they may have something to do with her sibling’s random disappearance.IMDb
- Director: Mark Robson
- Writers: Charles O’Neal, DeWitt Bodeen
- Cinematographer: Nicholas Musuraca
- Producer: Val Lewton
- Kim Hunter as Mary Gibson
- Tom Conway as Doctor Louis Judd
- Jean Brooks as Jacqueline Gibson
- Isabel Jewell as Frances Fallon
- Hugh Beaumont as Gregory Ward
- Erford Gage as Jason Hoag
- Lou Lubin as Private Detective Irving August (uncredited)
- Chef Milani as Mr. Giacomo Romari
- Marguerita Sylva as Mrs. Bella Romari
- Evelyn Brent as Natalie Cortez
- Ben Bard as Mr. Brun
- Mary Newton as Esther Redi
- Elizabeth Russell as Mimi (uncredited)
- Wally Brown as Durk (uncredited)
- Feodor Chaliapin Jr. as Leo (uncredited)
- William Halligan as Paul Radeaux (uncredited)
- Eve March as Mildred Gilchrist (uncredited)
- Dewey Robinson as Conductor (uncredited)
- Barbara Hale as Subway Passenger (uncredited)
The fourth of nine budget “horror” films produced by Val Lewton for RKO Radio Pictures, The Seventh Victim falls squarely in the atmospheric subgenre of horror film noir. Joseph expresses his love for Val Lewton, film noir, and horror, calling The Seventh Victim a great combination of the three. Whitney appreciates stories with multiple relationships between characters who have more to offer than what is on the surface, and finds such a story in The Seventh Victim. The stunning visuals filled with shadow and unusual camera angles are what captured Daphne’s attention, and, of course, she loved seeing a younger version of the Beav’s dad (Hugh Beaumont). “Pure Lewton” is what Chad calls this amazing example of noir filmmaking, with it’s great mixture of horror and film noir style. Jeff loves how the story puts a naive and innocent main character in a world where everything seems cryptic and no one seems to say what they really mean.
Of course, the Classic Era Grue-Crew gives The Seventh Victim a hearty recommendation. As of this writing, The Seventh Victim can be streamed from Shudder. Other Lewton-RKO films currently on Shudder are Cat People (1942), I Walked with a Zombie (1943), The Leopard Man (1943), Curse of the Cat People (1944), The Body Snatcher (1945), and Isle of the Dead (1945).
If you’re interested, the Classic Era Grue Crew has covered two other Lewton produced films:
Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror: The Classic Era records a new episode every two weeks. In the next episode, they will discuss a movie chosen by Chad, Island of Lost Souls (1932), based on H.G. Wells’ The Island of Dr. Moreau (1896). “Are we not men?”
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