Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Powell and Pressburger week on Channel 4

Channel 4 is showing a Powell and Pressburger film every afternoon next week.

The details are:

Monday 1 September 13:00 - The Spy in Black (1939)

Tuesday 2 September 13:30 - One of Our Aircraft is Missing (1942)

Wednesday 3 September 13:30 - A Matter of Life and Death (1946)

Thursday 3 September 13:30 - Black Narcissus (1947)

Friday 4 September 13:15 - The Battle of the River Plate (1956)

I have written about A Matter of Life and Death before, but I also have a soft spot for One of Our Aircraft is Missing.

In it a British bomber crew, including Eric Portman, bales out and is aided by the Dutch Resistance, played by Googie Withers. Look too for a young Peter Ustinov.

1 comment:

HE Elsom said...

Yip yip yip. I first saw most of the P&P films on Channel 4 in the mid 1980s when Leslie Halliwell was programming their films, though the Arts Cinema in Cambridge managed to have a retrospective at the same time, which meant I saw I know where I'm going in the cinema at exactly the same time as it went out on television.

I agree about One of our aircraft. I also found it very moving -- it begins with a book of remembrance for the Dutch resistance fighters, which means you know that they're all going to die for helping the RAF men. I think the resistance leader is Pamela Brown, and Googie Withers is in a fairly minor role. Brown is most famous as the crazed nun in Black Narcissus.

The Spy in Black (P&P's first collaboration) is also a minor classic. The great Conrad Veidt does a pretty good job as a decent German, romantic hero and occasional comedian, and Valerie Hobson is nearly sexy. Also includes an early appearance of Darth Vader. The follow-up, Contraband, also with Veidt and Hobson as a comedy-romantic couple, is even harder to find, and a lot artier, but well worth looking out for.