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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Crisis Of Conscience For Brit Pair


End Of The Affair (1955) Probes Love's Torment

From a Graham Greene novel, and unique for tying a religious theme onto exploration of adultery among Londoners during and after WWII. There's a wonderful summary of the troubled project from perspective of David Lewis, whose producing credit this was, in The Creative Producer, a book-length interview conducted by James Curtis. Seems the venture began with Louis Mayer planning End Of The Affair as his comeback after ouster from MGM, but Mayer backed off and the venture wound ways to Columbia release for the US. Like all the big companies with distribution overhead, Columbia needed product to fill pipelines, so kept Brit firms busy via financing and release deals. End Of The Affair, a Coronado Production, got part of ten million that Columbia invested during 1954 in UK independents. Money also went to Warwick Pictures, an outfit with ongoing ties to Columbia, theirs including The Prisoner, upcoming Safari and Cockleshell Heroes. Did these click stateside? End Of The Affair wouldn't, a mere $472K collected in domestic rentals versus exploitable Safari, pushed much harder by Columbia to $1.3 million result. David Lewis thought End Of The Affair was a miss artistically, but maybe his was evaluation based on hopes gone unfulfilled, a common trouble for ambitious producers. The drama played well to me. Deborah Kerr and Van Johnson give good account as the lovers, and there's Peter Cushing fine as the cuckolded husband. This may be Cushing's best feature role before horrors at Hammer swallowed him up. Sony Movie Channel shows End Of The Affair from time to time in 1.85 HD.

4 Comments:

Blogger coolcatdaddy said...

I'm looking at your cover picture today thinking, "Jeez - why won't these people stop milling around and chatting and just sit down and enjoy the movie!"

9:14 AM  
Blogger James Abbott said...

I think Cushing simply walks away with this movie. He is excellent and .... really ... the most sympathetic person in the picture.

I know his horror fans will hate me, but I sure wish he made more movies like this, and fewer like Island of the Burning Doomed.

11:06 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

Of course, Peter Cushing and producer David Lewis had a connection of longstanding. Cushing's first film was THE MAN IN THE IRON MASK which was directed by James Whale. And Whale and Lewis were life partners. You have to wonder if they discussed the great Whale, who still had a couple of years left on the planet at the time of END OF THE AFFAIR.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Lionel Braithwaite said...

Peter Cushing a cuckolded husband? This I have to see.

4:55 PM  

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