Special: Ida Lupino

The Hitch-Hiker

Ida Lupino
USA 1953
71 min

Generally considered the first film noir directed by a woman, THE HITCH-HIKER, a trim, nasty true-crime saga set mostly in dusty Mexico, doesn’t reflect feminine sensibility in any way. Released only three months after a murderer named Billy cook was executed, THE HITCH-HIKER fictionalizes his final run, when he bummed a ride from two men on a hunting trip and forced them to drive him across the border. Here, the sadistic killer is called Emmett Myers, and his largely helpless victims are Roy and Gil, best friends who were kind enough to help out a guy whose car appeared to have broken down. For audiences of the day, THE HITCH-HIKER represented a chilling encounter with pure evil – “Who’ll be his next victim ... you?” asked the ad campaign – and Lupino treats Myers like a bomb that could go off at any instant, letting William Talman’s twitchy performance set the tone. (Mike D’Angelo)

  • Edmond O’Brien - Roy Collins
  • Frank Lovejoy - Gilbert Bowen
  • William Talman - Emmett Myers
  • José Torvay - Captain Alvarado
  • Collier Young
  • Ida Lupino
  • Nicholas Musuraca
  • Clem Portman
  • Roy Meadows
  • Douglas Stewart
  • Leith Stevens
  • Albert S. D’Agostino
  • Walter E. Keller
The Filmakers, RKO Radio Pictures
Reel Media International
16 mm
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