Lifeboat

1944, Drama, 1h 36m

29 Reviews 5,000+ Ratings

What to know

critics consensus

Hitchcock proves he can wring suspense from the most confined of settings aboard a raft teeming with vivid personalities in this maritime thriller. Read critic reviews

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Movie Info

In this tense Alfred Hitchcock thriller, based on a John Steinbeck novella, American and British civilians who have survived the sinking of their ship by a German submarine struggle to reach land in a crowded lifeboat. When a German officer (Walter Slezak) is rescued from the water, the group allows him to board, but his presence only increases the tensions on the boat. Soon treachery ensues, and the population of the vessel gradually decreases as conflicts come to a head.

Cast & Crew

Tallulah Bankhead
Constance "Connie" Porter
Mary Anderson
Alice MacKenzie
John Hodiak
John Kovac
Henry Hull
Charles D. 'Ritt' Rittenhouse
Heather Angel
Mrs. Higgins
Hume Cronyn
Stanley "Sparks" Garrett
Canada Lee
George "Joe" Spencer
William Yetter Jr.
German sailor (uncredited)
Ben Hecht
Screenwriter
Jo Swerling
Screenwriter
Hugo Friedhofer
Original Music
Glen MacWilliams
Cinematography
Dorothy Spencer
Film Editing
James Basevi
Art Director
Thomas Little
Set Decoration
René Hubert
Costume Design
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Critic Reviews for Lifeboat

Audience Reviews for Lifeboat

  • Feb 22, 2021
    Come for Tallulah Bankhead stay for the simmering tension and engaging debates around wartime morality.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jul 02, 2016
    One of my favorite Hitchcock films. The drama, all taking place on a lifeboat, is gripping from beginning to end, Hitchcock's direction is top-form and I can't recall any other Hitch film with the emotional power of this movie. The entire cast shines, especially Tallulah Bankhand as the elitist journalist opposite John Hodiak as the blue-collar worker. This is a must-see film for lovers of cinema.
    Aldo G Super Reviewer
  • Apr 03, 2016
    An engaging chamber movie in which all action takes place inside a lifeboat, impressing us most with its technical achievement (if there was any doubt about Hitchcock's directing skills before it, this film certainly removed it) and Tallulah Bankhead standing out in a great cast.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Nov 25, 2013
    One of the better Hitchcocks, Lifeboat gives us a nice claustrophobic feel on a small craft in the middle of the ocean full of persons with mixed motivations. It is a classic setup for psychological tension and the cast finely delivers.
    John B Super Reviewer

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