Browse all reviews by letter     A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0 - 9

UK 1948
Directed by
David Lean
96 minutes
Rated PG

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
2 stars

The Passionate Friends

David Lean who took over the job of director from Ronald Neame re-visits Brief Encounter (1945) territory complete with the heroine once again contemplating suicide courtesy of British Rail.  The theme of the perils of marital infidelity are moved up-market and across borders but to no great effect. The screenplay could have been written by Noel Coward - he:"Are you happy", she:"Yes, very. Are you?"" exchanges abound - but is in fact scripted by Eric Ambler from a H.G.Wells story.

Trevor Howard reappears, this time as a Professor rather than a Doctor but even more smugly charming and self-righteous as only the English can be whilst Celia Johnson is replaced by Ann Todd who similarly radiated a no-sex please, I'm British female demeanour whilst Claude Rains provides a variant on the dutiful husband stereotype.  All up. as the title suggests The Passionate Friends is a little too twee but that in itself has some appeal.




Want something different?

random vintage best worst