A former editor with a flair for both darkly satirical comedy and even darker British film noir, Robert Hamer was a key figure in postwar British cinema. His sensitive talent was probably best showcased in the handsome and witty period-set comedy of murders, "Kind Hearts and Coronets" (1949) and the realistic yet superbly moody noir "It Always Rains on Sunday" (1947). Hamer was also responsible for what some critics consider the best segment in the classic horror anthology, "Dead of Night" (1945), in which a haunted mirror keeps displaying a murder committed long ago, and which begins to take possession of its new owner. Among other films, the adult and complexly plotted "The Spider and the Fly" (1949) and the witty and civilized detective comedy "Father Brown" (1954) stand out. Unfortunately, Hamer's highly promising career was derailed by an alcohol problem and he died at the age of 52.