10 Lindsay Anderson, 'British Cinema: The Descending Spiral' in Sequence 7 (Spring 1949), p. 9. Farrar's bomb expert is a similar flawed and sardonic visionary, ready to put himself in danger in the cause of advancing knowledge and saving life; Kathleen Byron overcomes frustrations to commit herself to him at the end. In both films, the experts have to choke back their irritation with ignorant but influential visitors to their workplace, and the obstacles to rational progress are conveyed in lucidly staged committee meetings. The Small Back Room is, like White Corridors, based on a wartime novel, though the subject matter meant that updating it was not an option. In visual texture, the films are at opposite extremes, of white and of noir.
11 On Tearle, see Rachael Low, The History of the British Film: 1906—1914 (Allen & Unwin, 1948), p. 117, and on Edwards, Rachael Low, The History of the British Film: 1914—18 (Allen & Unwin, 1950), p. 79 and many other references.
12 On the genesis of The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, see Michael Powell, A Life in Movies (Heinemann, 1986), p. 399. On the generational conflict in Mandy, and, indeed, on the other Ealing material referred to earlier, see the third edition of my Ealing Studios (Cameron & Hollis/University of California Press, 1999).
13 Powell, A Life in the Movies, pp. 653—4 and 670.
15 Film Dope (July 1983), editorial introduction to interview with Pat Jackson, p. 1.
Was this article helpful?