The Browning Version (1951)


“I may have been a brilliant scholar, but I was woefully ignorant of the facts of life.” – Andrew Crocker-Harris

Number of Times Seen – 1 (8 Jun 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A teacher must deal with his impending forced retirement and his marriage that is falling apart.

My Take on it – This is a film that I chose to watch after seeing the remake of it with Albert Finney.

This version is superior to the remake largely due to the spectacular performance by Michael Redgrave in the lead role.

The way that his character interacts with all of those that encounter him is quite interesting to watch and they all come across as being quite realistic and genuine which is able to raise the level of the story so much.

The film has amazing dialogue that fee timeless and allows us to care so much more about the characters and everything that happens here.

The main character has hit a point in his life where he must made a decision as to what direction he wishes to go and we can easily feel the weight of these decisions on Redgrave face the entire time.

We also get to see how revelations about his work as a teacher and a spouse were not exactly as he perceived and how that takes a toll on him.

This is a film that finds a way to stay poignant in its message throughout while also making the viewer nostalgic for teachers that were able to inspire their students.

Bottom Line – Amazing story that works really well largely due to Redgrave’s performance in the lead. The interactions that his character has with the others seems quite genuine and realistic which enhances things so much. The dialogue is superb and helps make us care so much about the character as he has hit a point in his life where he needs to make some harsh decisions about what he will now do. The story finds a way to be extremely poignant in all that it does and makes one nostalgic for teachers who were so impactful in what they did. Highly Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – In 1993, director Mike Figgis was dressing for a dinner party at the home of Ridley Scott’s producer and happened to switch on this version of the Terence Rattigan play. He became so riveted that he arrived late to the party. He explained to his host the reason for his tardiness. His host said that, coincidentally, he himself had recently optioned the remake rights and was looking for a director. Figgis went on to direct the 1994 remake (The Browning Version (1994)) with Albert Finney. (From IMDB)

Rating – Oscar Worthy (9/10)

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One thought on “The Browning Version (1951)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1951 | MovieRob

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