The Collector

Early Terence Stamp gem, and a faithful rendering of John Fowles' novel

April 7th, 2011 by Wayward Muse
Rating: Genres: Featured Actors: Actors: Maurice Dallimore, Mona Washbourne, Samantha Eggar Directors: William Wyler
The Collector

I’m a huge fan of Terence Stamp, and rather fond of Samantha Eggar, who won a Golden Globe and got an Oscar nomination for this film, so I was excited to watch it. It did not disappoint! I’m also a fan of John Fowles’ The Collector, and felt the movie stayed very true to the book. I can’t say the movie is really scary by today’s standards, though, even though the book is. This may indeed have been an influence on modern thrillers like Silence of the Lambs, but it’s no Psycho! What it is, is a really fascinating psychological study of a rather milquetoast, possibly slightly autistic, little man who can only relate to the world at a distance.

He collects, and thus must destroy, though he may be incapable of ever understanding this lesson. He has no comprehension of the nature of love, only of the desire to possess. His victim’s only hope, and ours as we sympathize with her plight, is that she might be able to prevail upon some small tendency towards empathy inside her captor. All the tension and suspense revolves around this possibility. The soundtrack is rather ironically light, only rarely sinister, and plays up the irony of evil dwelling in this mild-mannered man—as they say: “the last person anyone would ever suspect.”

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