Fun and pertinent within its narrow band of polemic, although the film studies student part of me would have wish for a clearer essay structure and a wider consideration of types of rom coms including the hybrids and how the structure is used in westerns, sci & fantasy and action films. It also all but ignores international cinema. But I appreciate that it only covers a very specific type of romcom from a particular era and in that regard its worth your time.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
As with most of his films from the silent era, Downhill doesn't really have much in common with Hitch's later work in narrative terms. The BFI's synopsis suggests its "an early variation on his fabled ‘wrong man’ plot" but in all of the later examples, it's the spark for a propulsive suspense narrative whereas this is more of a morality or cautionary tale - it's Novello's choice not to reveal the truth. But it is an excellent example of episodic…