The Invisible Man has surprisingly good effects for 1933, and a lead performance by Claude Rains that reminded me at times of Heath Ledger’s iconic Joker from The Dark Knight. For that performance alone, this movie is worth seeing.
Based on the H.G. Wells novel, it starts off a little silly — there’s a loud family that runs an inn in rural England, a clueless cop, a mad scientist who’s been missing for a month, and a doting woman waiting for him to come back. The descent into darkness, which we’re told is what’s happening to Rains’ mental health, is quick and brutal.
I didn’t get especially invested in William Harrigan’s
Professor Kemp or the other side characters here, but I didn’t need to. More than Dracula
, which I appreciated more than I enjoyed, The Invisible Man actually feels like a menace. Recommended. ★★★½