Archive C

Circle of Danger (1950)

Ray Milland comes to England to find out how his brother was killed in the war. Jacques Tourneur directs but can't reach the heights of his work for Val Lewton, largely due to the story's episodic structure in which Milland goes from one old comrade to another getting bits of information. Only in the last 10 minutes or so does the tension pick up.

Script adapt.: (o.a.) Philip Macdonald

Director: Jacques Tourneur

Players: Ray Milland, Hugh Sinclair, Patricia Roc, Marius Goring, Naunton Wayne, Edward Rigby, Marjorie Fielding, Dora Bryan 

The City (1939)If War Should come

A town planner puts forward his solution to London's growing traffic, while the Post Office copes with the problem.

This is definitely not the documentary as artistic statement. A lecture on the growth of London turns into a Blue Peter style look at the underground tunnels used by the Post Office to shift mail. Bags of irony when you compare the traffic then and now, and also when you think of what the Luftwaffe were about to do to London.

Director: Ralph Elton

City of Song (1930)

Socialite moulds an Italian guide into being a singing star but he pines for his old life in Naples.

British version of a trilingual production designed to showcase Polish tenor Jan Keipura's talent. A beautifully-packaged production with some lovely location shooting, though Betty Stockfeld struggles to get out from the constrictions of a role played by Brigitte Helm in the German version.

Script: Miles Malleson, Hans Szekley

Director: Carmine Gallone

Players: Jan Keipura, Betty Stockfeld, Heather Angel, Hugh Wakefield, Francesco Maldacea, Philip Easton, Miles Malleson 

The Clairvoyant (1934)

A fake clairvoyant (Claude Rains) discovers he can do it for real, but will anyone believe him when he sees a mining disaster about to happen? Great spooky drama with an impressive performance from Raines. 

Script adapt.: Charles Bennett, Bryan Edgar Wallace, Robert Edmunds. (o.a. Ernest Lothar)

Director: Maurice Elvey

Players: Claude Rains, Fay Wray, Jane Baxter, Ben Field, Athole Stewart, Mary Clare, Felix Aylmer, Donald Calthrop

The Clicking of Cuthbert (1924)

A golfer falls in love with a poetess and tries to pretend to be an intellectual.

Amusing golf tale enlivened by Moore Marriott as a mad Russian revolutionary.

Director: Andrew P Wilson

Players: Helena Pickard, Peter Haddon, Peter Upcher, Harry Beasley, Moore Marriott 

Climbing High (1938)

A lord romances a model incognito despite being engaged to a gold-digging society beauty. 

Jessie Matthews didn't like the songs so they were cut. Carol Reed can't direct comedy. Some scenes work but some, particularly those involving Francis L. Sullivan as an escaped lunatic, are excruciatingly awful. All in all, a poor picture to end a star career.

Script: Stephen Clarkson

Director: Carol Reed

Players: Jessie Matthews, Michael Redgrave, Noel Madison, Alistair Sim, Mary Clare, Francis L. Sullivan, Margaret Vyner, Torin Thatcher, Francis L. Sullivan, Enid Stamp-Taylor, Basil Radford, Athole Stewart

Cloak Without Dagger (1955)

A woman bumps into her former boyfriend years after she blundered into a spy-capturing operation that damaged his career. She becomes convinced that she's seen the spy and tries to help her ex capture him.

Dull, unconvincing and cheap. The only interest is in the central role: a rare instance in the 50s of a woman leading a B-movie plot and handling most of the action.

Script: A.R. Rawlinson

Director: Joseph Sterling

Players: Mary Mackenzie, Philip friend, Leslie Dwyer, Allan Cuthbertson, Chin Yu, John G Heller, Bill Nagy, Patrick Jordan, Patricia Haines, Stuart Mitchell, Ivor Dean, Marianne Stone, Maria Mercedes, Frank Thornton, Gerry Levey, Boris Ranevsky

The Clouded Yellow (1950)

Trevor Howard is the disgraced former spy who tries the quiet life cataloguing butterflies. His peace is interrupted when the young girl of the household, Jean Simmons, is accused of murder. 

Interesting thriller distinguished by location shooting from Newcastle to Liverpool, and a fine performance from Simmons. 

Script: Eric Ambler

Director: Ralph Thomas

Players: Trevor Howard, Jean Simmons, Maxwell Reed, Barry Jones, Sonia Dresdel, Kenneth More, Andre Morell, Geoffrey Keen, Michael Brennan, Gerard Heinz, Lilly Kann, Sandra Dorne, Gabrielle Blunt, Eric Pohlmann, K.C. Ooi, Marianne Stone, Richard Wattis, Maire O'Neill, Sam Kydd, Cyril Chamberlain, Glyn Houston