The Black Rider (film)

The Black Rider is a 1954 British low budget thriller film directed by Wolf Rilla and starring Jimmy Hanley, Rona Anderson and Leslie Dwyer.[1]

The Black Rider
Australian daybill poster
Directed byWolf Rilla
Produced byA.R. Rawlinson
Written byA.R. Rawlinson
Story byPeter Jones (play Marion)
StarringJimmy Hanley
Rona Anderson
Music byWilfred Burns
CinematographyGeoffrey Faithfull
Edited byJohn Trumper
Balblair Productions (presents)
Distributed byButcher's Film Service (UK)
Release date
December 1954 (UK)
Running time
65 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom


Young reporter and amateur biker Jerry Marsh investigates sightings of a hooded black figure on a motorbike. It turns out a gang of smugglers use a haunted castle as their base, deterring curious locals by pretending to be ghosts.[2]


Critical reception

Britmovie wrote, "(the) plot is seemingly lifted almost intact from the pages of a Boys' Own adventure or the writings of children’s author Enid Blyton...Of particular note here is Lionel Jeffries (The Revenge of Frankenstein 1958) as the villain of the piece. Although only in his late 20s, Jeffries already looks much older than his years and effortlessly brings to the role the gravitas it requires...Jeffries also succeeds in making A.R. Rawlinson’s mediocre dialogue sound far better than it actually is...This is a surprisingly stylish piece of filmmaking overall. Most importantly, (Wolf) Rilla succeeds in keeping the narrative moving at a brisk pace. At a time when low-budget British productions remained resolutely studio-bound, The Black Rider features a refreshing amount of exterior footage. Among the lengthiest sequences occurring outdoors an obstacle course at fete that takes on an almost newsreel-like quality" ;[3] while TV Guide wrote, "the only thing discomfiting about this film is the poor direction and inept acting." [4]


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