Welcome to this blog of my film reviews. Some have been drafted carefully on paper, others I have sat and typed. I'm going to make it clear right now that I don't expect you to agree with my (re)views, or to like my style of writing. However, I want my views to be just out there and open, as a person who wishes to express himself from deep within. Feel free to comment and debate with me, but I do ask that you are civil and not harsh, as any comments which are basically swear words and insults will automatically be deleted. Also any text that is in orange (and often bold) is a Hyperlink to either a source, or a previous post for background reference.

Monday, 12 September 2011

It Always Rains on Sunday


When Tommy Swann (John McCallum) escapes from prison he tracks down his ex-lover Rose (Googie Withers), who agrees to hide him from the Police, not thinking about the effects it could have on her marriage to middle-aged Harry Sandigate (Edward Chapman).

This is not a brilliant film from Ealing Studios, such as Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) is. The film's not that brilliantly paced, with a number of scenes which tend to drag, and which one feels were sloppily written to reach the target (and actual) running time of 92 minutes. The cast is also quite a mixed bag. Withers gives a sensitive leading performance, depicting Rose as a woman torn between the loyalty to her husband and the love for her ex; while McCallum makes Tommy a man desperate for freedom, giving a good portrayal of the character's agression; and Chapman depicts the London working class character of Harry as a genuine image of the working class man and his lifestyle of that era. The most obvious flaws in the casting come in the form of Harry's teenage daughters, Vi (Susan Shaw) and Doris (Patricia Plunkett), both of whom fail to give a convincing portrayal of two sisters, with the little bond between the two depicted woodenly, and with Shaw depicting Vi's resentment of Rose too cockily, and Plunkett understating Doris's frustration with her older sister.

The film, however, is an interesting and accurate depiction of a working class family in the 1940s. Marriage resulted in Rose having to become a housewife, cooking, cleaning and sorting out the ration books, as many married women had to, post World War II; while George is a working man who goes down the pub with his friends. This depiction of a working class family is wholly accurate as it was the social expectation that a working class family would live in this way, and watching it today and comparing it to the near non-existent social restrictions in terms of employment really makes one think. The film is also a depiction of yearnings for freedom. It is not just Tommy who yearns to be free of his imprisonment, but Rose is a subtle, yet moving depiction of one who wishes to be free from her dependancy on her husband, and live an independent, enjoyable life as she had before, which is truly sparked more than anything else by Tommy coming back into her life.

An enjoyable and interesting, though not brilliant, film from Ealing Studios, this film is definetly worth a viewing, though it is by far not one of the classics.

Stars: Googie Withers, John McCallum, Edward Chapman, Susan Shaw, Patricia Plunkett, Jack Warner, David Lines, Sydney Tafler, Betty Ann Davies, John Slater, Jane Hylton, Frederick Piper, Alfie Bass, Michael Howard, Meier Tzelniker, Jimmy Hanley, John Carol, Hermione Baddeley, Nigel Stock, John Salew, Gladys Henson.

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