Film historian (Brief Encounters, Black in the British Frame)
|Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
|Imitation of Life
|The Member of the Wedding
|The Night of the Hunter
|North by Northwest
|Singin' in the Rain
|Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen
|Some Like It Hot
|A Taste of Honey
Director Sam Mendes is in total control of a brilliantly acted (especially by George MacKay), innovative and emotional roller-coaster.
An erotic, sensuous and spiritual film of extraordinary power and resonance. Says Sister Clodagh (Deborah Kerr): “You can’t hold back nature and what is natural.” This is sheer poetry and central to the film, for Black Narcissus is telling us what is natural cannot be contained, or restrained.
Imitation of Life
Douglas Sirk’s glossy, disturbing melodrama powerfully exposes racism in 1950s America.
The Member of the Wedding
Sweet and sour, with a matchless trio of ‘misfits’ including Julie Harris, whose hyper-active character is all over the place. In contrast, Ethel Waters is the solid, motherly figure that fills the screen. It was a breakthrough for a black film actress and she is magnificent.
The Night of the Hunter
The nightmare of childhood is explored in Charles Laughton’s imaginative gothic horror. Robert Mitchum’s evil phony Preacher is matched by Lillian Gish’s good Bible-quoting widow who cares for orphans.
North by Northwest
Hitchcock’s suspense thriller takes Cary Grant on an exhilarating but frightening journey and a memorable knife-edge climax.
The Trinidadian Horace Ove exposes some of the harsh realities of being young, black and dispossessed in Britain in the 1970s. Raw, honest and brutal, Ove reveals the inner soul of Britain’s black working-class community at an explosive time in their history.
Singin' in the Rain
Pure joy from start to finish, unequalled in the movie musical canon. Who can resist joining Gene Kelly and his co-stars laughing at clouds so dark up above?
Some Like It Hot
Billy Wilder’s clever, sparkling comedy is hardly able to contain the high-energy performances of Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis. It also has the famous words delivered by Joe E. Brown: “Nobody’s perfect.” It is the perfect punch-line for the perfect movie.
A Taste of Honey
A magical, atmospheric and often endearingly funny observation of ‘real’ life, which contains some of the most outstanding performances ever seen in a British film.
For me, this has been a subjective heart and mind exercise, not an intellectual one. I have thoroughly enjoyed it!