Monday, March 02, 2015

Bobby Henrey 66 years after The Fallen Idol

Insomnia can have its advantages. In the small hours of this morning I came across this video of a Mr Robert Henrey addressing the Greenwich Retired Men's Association.

Robert Henrey turned out to be the child actor Bobby Henrey, some 66 years after he shot to fame for his performance in Carol Reed's The Fallen Idol.

Listening to him today there is no hint of the gorgeous French accent he had as an eight-year-old, but maybe you can still detect a hint of English in his East Coast American.

The Fallen Idol is one of my favourite films, though I suspect I may have seen it once too often.

This morning I also came across a really good blog post about it by The Nitrate Diva:
The fact that a twitchy, rather selfish child has to navigate this labyrinth of moral quandaries not only heightens the suspense, but also hints to what extent these kinds of human heart dilemmas bewilder us all and reduce us to little more than children. 
When Phile cries out, “We’ve got to think of lies and tell them all the time!” at a key tense moment of the film, he’s actually articulating the code of the adult world, a protocol of deception, running the gamut from genteel fibs to half-truths to full-on backstabbing. 
Like his character Phile, Bobby Henrey also encountered an adult world far too soon. The French-born only child of two writers, he grew up in the bomb-shattered London of World War II. No wonder he had the attention span of a "demented flea," with bombs going off around him during his formative years! 

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I have had the pleasure of actually meeting Bobby Henrey at the Regal cinema, Tenbury Wells in Worcestershire on Friday, September 6th, 2013. Bobby had flown over from Connecticut to attend there the launch of his autobiography Through Grown-up Eyes – Living with Childhood Fame. I was a special guest at the event because I had helped him with information and stills for his book and he presented me with a hardback copy of it, dedicated to me in his own hand. As I was the first to arrive of a large number who attended the do, which included a digital screening of his famous film, I was able to have a long talk with him and we got on famously. He is as utterly charming now as he was as a child star and a number of photos were taken of us together, shaking hands, ect. David Rayner, Stoke on Trent.