This book offers a startling re-evaluation of what has until now been seen as the most critically lacklustre period of the British film history. It includes fresh assessment of maverick directors; Pat Jackson, Robert Hamer and Joseph Losey, and even of a maverick critic Raymond Durgnat. The book features personal insights from those inidividually implicated in 1950s cinema; Corin Redgrave on Michael Redgrave, Isabel Quigly on film reviewing, and Bryony Dixon of the BFI on archiving and preservation. A classic image from 1950s British cinema would be Jack Hawkins in The Cruel Sea, the epitome of quiet English integrity. Raymond Durgnat's A Mirror for England: British Movies from Austerity to Affluence, which deals extensively with British films of the 1950s, was written in the mid-1960s and was published in 1970. In a 1947 article called 'Angles of Approach' Lindsay Anderson delivered a fierce attack on contemporary British film culture, outlining a model for a devoted politics of creation, well in line with what we would later understand as auteurism and art cinema aesthetics . The war films of the 1950s together constitute the assented-to record of the emotions and moral judgments called upon to set in order those disorderly events. The book also talks about the Festival of Britain, White Corridors, and four Hamer's post-Ealing films: The Spider and the Fly, The Long Memory, Father Brown and The Scapegoat. A number of factors have contributed to the relative neglect of the 1950s as a decade in British cinema history.
‘Community Fifties’ ( John and Julie and The Browning
Version ), ‘Tough Fifties’ ( Women of Twilight and
Hell Drivers ) and ‘Women’s Fifties’ ( My Teenage
Daughter and Yield to the Night ).
the 1950s? After all, as the prefatory remarks of Anderson and Raphael show,
this is perhaps the most derided decade in Britishfilmhistory. It is
commonly characterised as the era in which the national cinema
perfunctory comment in Britishfilmhistories so this essay will outline
aspects of its production, exhibition, distribution and reception.
Although the film is lost, various primary materials survive including a
single fragment (46 feet) of the early scenes of the film held by the
National Film and Television Archive (NFTVA), a book of the film and a
souvenir programme or press-book. The