The Chalk Garden (1964)


“Thanks for the compliment. Don’t expect one in return!” – Laurel

Number of Times Seen – 1 (16 May 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A mysterious woman with a murky past arrives at an estate to take on the position of governess of a young trouble-some girl.

My Take on it – This is yet another film that I came across during my quest to watch all movies that feature Oscar nominated performances.

I knew nothing about this movie before watching it and was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable and intriguing it was.

This film does a great job looking at how growing up without parents can affect someone especially if they are lacking the proper guidance in life.

The fact that they keep certain aspects of the story very mysterious throughout is a great tool to help establish a storyline that remains interesting largely due to some surprises along the way.

Hayley Mills is great in the pivotal role of the young girl seeking guidance especially given the fact that this kind of role is quite different from the kinds of roles she played overt the years.

This shows that even at her young age, she had amazing range in her acting abilities.

The movie is able to tell a very compelling story and the way that they slowly give us more and more information about what is truly happening especially as it gives us some very interesting and intriguing revelations as things move along.

The entire cast is great but the standout is Edith Evans as the grandmother trying to do the best she can as she raises her precocious granddaughter.

She was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance here.

Bottom Line – Great look at the affect of growing up without parents and how one needs to have the proper guidance in life.  The way that they keep certain aspects of the story mysterious works quite well in helping to establish an intriguing storyline with some great surprises along the way.  Mills is great in this film since she usually doesn’t play such a precocious child and this shows that even at her young age, she had range.  The film manages to tell a very compelling story that slowly gives us more and more information as it moves to some very interesting and intriguing revelations along the way.  Evans was nominated for an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her work here as the grandmother doing the best she can to raise her granddaughter. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Gladys Cooper was originally named to play the role of Mrs. St. Maugham (Edith Evans). Evans, who had created the role on stage, wanted the movie version very much, and had Director Ronald Neame take her to meet Producer Ross Hunter at Claridges Hotel. Evans won the producer over, and she got the part.  (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (7/10)

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2 thoughts on “The Chalk Garden (1964)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actress – Oscars 1964 | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1964 | MovieRob

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