James Whale has long been known for his Frankenstein pictures, and, as great as those are, it must be said that The Old Dark House is deserving of just as much praise - if not more. This long lost film has made it to the Blu-ray format. It is a wonder to behold. The film has never looked or sounded this amazing before.
Featuring a cast to die for - Gloria Stuart, Charles Laughton, Boris Karloff, Ernest Thesiger, Eva Moore, and Lilian Bond) the film opens during a torrential downpour (the quintessential dark and stormy night) as two of our protagonists look for and find shelter at a gloomy mansion.
Upon arriving, they find that the house is inhabited by a family of eccentrics - a brother and sister, their decrepit mother, a monstrous butler, and one other mysterious chap - who are none too pleased with the strangers who have disrupted their privacy. A series of awkward introductions leads to the arrival of another couple who insist on staying as well.
Soon, the dark nature of the house and the family within it begins to rise to the surface, and our protagonists will have to find the courage that they will need to survive the night with their sanity intact.
A perfect combination of genuine chills and outright hilarity, The Old Dark House is a film that earns its reputation as one of James Whale's finest achievements. The Cohen Media Group has done a fantastic job on the 4K restoration here, and the Blu-ray is packed with special features - including two commentaries, one featuring the late, great Gloria Stuart - an interview with Boris Karloff's daughter, and a piece on the restoration of the film. Highly recommended.