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Robert Murphy

romanticism, politics, class, masculinity, sexuality and social problems. Durgnat writes appreciatively about Hammer and Gainsborough, purveyors of despised melodramas and horror films; he takes Powell and Pressburger seriously and gives sympathetic consideration to directors like Val Guest, Roy Baker, J. Lee Thompson, Basil Dearden, Roy and John Boulting and John Guillermin who were regarded as irredeemably

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
The King’s Speech as melodrama
Nicola Rehling

-Smith, Laura Mulvey, Chuck Kleinhans and David Rodowick, among others, focused on the 1950s family melodrama, typified by the work of Douglas Sirk. 6 While differing in emphasis, this cycle of films explored intergenerational conflicts and repressions within middle-class families, most often through the suffering of a victim (rarely the father) who served as the primary figure of identification. These films, it was argued, could

in The British monarchy on screen
Open Access (free)
Pat Jackson’s White Corridors
Charles Barr

W HITE CORRIDORS , a hospital drama first shown in June 1951, belongs to the small class of fictional films that deny themselves a musical score. Even the brief passages that top and tail the film, heard over the initial credits and the final image, were added against the wish of its director, Pat Jackson. Jackson had spent the first ten years of his career in documentary, joining the GPO Unit in the

in British cinema of the 1950s
A reply from Saturday Night to Mr. Dienstag
Tracy B. Strong

chateau giving out the pretense that the death of Jurieux was a “deplorable accident” (the gamekeeper is said by la Chesnaye, quite untruthfully, to have thought Jurieux was a poacher and to have shot him comme c’était son droit ; the General then opines that with this prevarication the Marquis has demonstrated “class”), a pretense that only underlines the

in Cinema, democracy and perfectionism
Open Access (free)
Fixing the past in English war films
Fred Inglis

as a result not only of his quite amazing facility for learning foreign languages – at his death he spoke and read eleven – but of his luminous intelligence, his gifts as a poet, his striking high-mindedness and idealism, his strong sense of the comic. At Oxford in 1938, with Iris Murdoch as his sweetheart, he was, like all generous-hearted and public-spirited young men and women of his class, a

in British cinema of the 1950s
Consumerism and alienation in 1950s comedies
Dave Rolinson

the Bank of England) to resist the claims of private individuals and the working class. Alienated from a sense of inclusion in the invisible product of his employers, the Bank of England, Holland seeks to reward his ‘worth’ in their terms. In order to achieve the theft of their invisible product, he has to conspire with Pendlebury, a maker of visible products. Morality asserts itself as the robbers are caught by

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
The early British films of Joseph Losey
Neil Sinyard

because of the particular quality of these early films: it is also because their making and their reception have so much to say about what was going on at the time in film criticism. As Losey was having his titanic struggles with studios and actors and applying his outsider’s perspective on English mores (notably, sex and class), the films were also providing a focus and indeed a battleground for

in British cinema of the 1950s
Open Access (free)
The Admirable Crichton and Look Back in Anger
Stephen Lacey

occupied a kind of wasteland for most of the 1950s, limited in their artistic ambition and social reach, confined to the lower-middle-class parochialism of Ealing comedy on the one hand and the torpor of upper-middle-class country-house drama on the other. In this version, rescue came in the form of working-class realism (though earlier in the decade for theatre than for film), which extended the social basis of

in British cinema of the 1950s
Separate Tables, separate entities?
Dominic Shellard

himself – but see below – of his own play (or rather two oneacters) of the same name. In it the work of the ‘West End dramatist’ (the cliché view of Rattigan) was brought to the screen by director Delbert Mann who was at the heart of New York realism in his earlier films, with versions of Paddy Chayevsky’s brilliant, working-class TV dramas Marty (1955) and The Bachelor Party (1957

in British cinema of the 1950s
Contemporary ‘British’ cinema and the nation’s monarchs
Andrew Higson

, luxury and privilege that is very much the product of inheritance and historical legacy. But they also tell stories that are shot through with present-day concerns, anxieties and reference points. Thus in the films set in the late eighteenth century and later, the spectacle of heritage is countered by scenes from modern, domestic, middle-class family life. The blurring of past and present almost by

in The British monarchy on screen