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Friday, September 4, 2015

Saturday Night And Sunday Morning (1960)

A working class bloke (Albert Finney) in Nottingham works as a machinist in a factory. He has a contempt for the complacent acceptance of his parents' generation and his peers who give in to such institutions as marriage. He might end up being absorbed by convention but he's going to put up a fight on his way there. This sordid (that's not meant as a put down) and bleak look at working class life is one of the best "kitchen sink" dramas to emerge from Great Britain. The very late 50s and early 60s were a great period for British cinema. Exciting new directors like Lindsay Anderson, Tony Richardson and Karel Reisz and writers like John Osborne and Harold Pinter brought a much needed fresh eye to English cinema and away from the British nobility and upper classes to focus on Britain's working class. It also brought some raw unpolished talent to the forefront like Michael Caine, Tom Courtenay, Richard Harris and here, Albert Finney. While the film may not have the impact it had in 1960, it's still a beautifully crafted piece of work. Finney is superb and in the film's other great performance, Rachel Roberts as the married woman he's having an affair with. The film's evocative B&W lensing shows why Freddie Francis was one of the best cinematographers working in England at the time. With Shirley Anne Field, Bryan Pringle, Hylda Baker and Colin Blakely.  

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