6.8/10
145
6 user 3 critic

The Man Upstairs (1958)

John Wilson is troubled with pain and and an inability to sleep. He tries to light the gas-fire and seeks help from another lodger, artist Nicholas, who is spending the night with his model... See full summary »

Director:

Don Chaffey

Writers:

Alun Falconer (original story and screenplay), Robert Dunbar (additional scenes and dialogue) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Attenborough ... The Man Upstairs
Bernard Lee ... The Inspector
Donald Houston ... Sanderson
Dorothy Alison ... Mrs. Barnes
Virginia Maskell ... Helen Grey
Kenneth Griffith Kenneth Griffith ... Mr. Pollen
Patricia Jessel ... Mrs. Lawrence
Alfred Burke Alfred Burke ... Mr. Barnes
Charles Houston ... Nicholas
Maureen Connell ... Miss Blair
Amy Dalby Amy Dalby ... Miss Acres
Walter Hudd ... The Superintendent
Patrick Jordan Patrick Jordan ... Injured Sergeant
Graham Stewart Graham Stewart ... Sergeant Morris
Victor Brooks Victor Brooks ... Sergeant Collins
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Storyline

John Wilson is troubled with pain and and an inability to sleep. He tries to light the gas-fire and seeks help from another lodger, artist Nicholas, who is spending the night with his model, and is reluctant to be disturbed. Another neighbor, Pollen, tries to be helpful, but is hit by Wilson. Frightened and angry, Pollen calls for police help. The others in the boarding house are awakened by this time, and Mrs. Harris tries to help the mentally confused Wilson, but he also refuses her help. The police clash with Dr. Sanderson, a welfare worker, who thinks he can take the gun-toting Wilson without complications, but when a Police Sergeant is injured, Police Inspector Thompson is determined to take Wilson by force if necessary. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A night of shattering suspense See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 February 1961 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

El hombre de arriba See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

No fades, dissolves, or background music; the action takes place in exactly the running time of the movie. See more »

Soundtracks

Beast of the Jungle
(uncredited)
Music by J.S. Zamecnik
SynchroFox Music Library
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Taut and impressive
9 March 2015 | by Marco_TrevisiolSee all my reviews

This tense drama - about a disturbed man locked in his apartment room wanted by the police and seemingly in an untenable situation - is quite unusual in its structure.

Apart from the studio and title of the film, there are no opening credits. There is no background music and the film takes place in 'real time'. These are challenging restrictions for a film but director Don Chaffey does a largely splendid job.

The secret to the film's success is that it doesn't excessively focus on the central character (played by Richard Attenborough in his typically intense, brooding style) but places him in the context of the law, support organisations and ordinary citizens (represented by other tenants of the building).

The film deftly creates a range of characterisations who either want to help or apprehend 'the man upstairs' or just have him out of their way for their own personal reasons. It highlights how a character in the plight that Attenborough's is in is reliant on sensible, selfless and practical measures by those around him to not potentially ruin his life.

While not a classic, 'The Man Upstairs' is a fine film, worth seeking out.


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