This uncharacteristic Alfred Hitchcock endeavor was adapted by Hitch and his wife, Alma Reville, from a play by John Galsworthy. The British countryside turns into an ideological battlefield when Hornblower (Edmund Gwenn), a wealthy, self-man tradesman, stakes his claim to a piece of valuable forest property controlled for literally centuries by the "landed gentry." The local squire (C.V. France) and his wife (Helen Haye) dig in their heels and refuse to acknowledge Hornblower's presence -- how dare he use mere money to challenge the rights of blood? Their genteel snobbery is every bit as obnoxious as Hornblower's brash effrontery, and the result is a film with virtually no heroes or villains whatever. Never in any future film did Hitchcock ever lobby so strong an attack on the smug implacability of the aristocracy -- perhaps wisely, since The Skin Game proved to be one of his least-successful films.
by Hal Erickson synopsis