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GONE TO EARTH

MICHAEL POWELL & EMERIC PRESSBURGER

This film screened 19th December 2010.

The break with Rank over The Red Shoes drove Powell and Pressburger back into the seductive embrace of Alexander Korda, who had brought them together in 1938 and who was now, after years in Hollywood, consolidating a new bid to reach an international audience from a British base. Gone to Earth was based on a deal with David O. Selznick, and stars Selznick’s soon-to-be wife, Jennifer Jones, who is beautiful and touching as the heroine of Mary Webb’s period melodrama set, and shot, in rural Shropshire, close to the Welsh-English border: Powell had spent days walking the hills with his cameraman, Christopher Challis, to find the right locations, and this pays off abundantly; yet Selznick rejected the completed film and ordered extensive Hollywood re-shooting, resulting in a new version entitled Wild at Heart.

History has rightly forgotten that version and vindicated the Powell-Pressburger original, shown here in all of its restored Technicolor glory.

110 minutes| U.K.-U.S.A.| 1950| Colour| 35mm

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