It's 1939 in the small English town of Penny Green and events in Poland are about to change lives. Mark Sabre, a writer of school text books, has married Mabel "on the rebound", after his ...
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It's 1939 in the small English town of Penny Green and events in Poland are about to change lives. Mark Sabre, a writer of school text books, has married Mabel "on the rebound", after his real love Nona marries some one else. Just as war is about to break out, Nona returns home with husband Tony. Mable is sure she can hold onto Mark, though. But misunderstood good deeds on Mark's part turn life for him upside down when his relationship with a young girl starts tongues wagging. Soon, wartime casualties take their toll in Penny Green as well as on the front, as the death of fighting men affects lives back home. Written by
Ron Kerrigan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Angela Lansbury then twenty-two wanted the sympathetic role of the waif-like village girl Effie but was forced to play Mabel the thirty-five year old shrewish wife of fifty year old Walter Pidgeon. This brought home to Lansbury that she would never be a star player at MGM. The role of Effie went to Janet Leigh who would be Lansbury's co-star in The Manchurian Candidate where Lansbury would again play an older unsympathetic woman although this role - Mrs. Iselin - would be cited by Lansbury as her favorite film role. See more »
Though set in England, Mark and Tony both wear American ties, recognizable by the diagonal stripes slanting down toward the right. English ties always slant to the left. See more »
Despite some of the negative reviews on this site, I really enjoyed this 1947 film, which is set in England right before war is declared in Europe.
Walter Pidgeon is Mark Sabre, a successful writer of children's books, who works at a prominent publishing house. He is well respected and liked in the small town of Penneygreen, where he lives. Though he is a shareholder in the company, he will never be made partner because his boss thinks that Mark's political views are too radical. In fact, he'd love it if Mark weren't even in the company. But the only way he can get rid of him is if Mark violates the morals clause in his contract.
Mark married the formal, somewhat cold Mabel (Angela Lansbury) on the rebound. Now his former love, Nona (Deborah Kerr) returns to town with her husband after a long absence. Nona and Mark realize that they are still in love, but decide for the moment that they can't act on their feelings.
Mark's situation is complicated by a young pregnant woman, Effie (Janet Leigh) who turns to Mark for help after her father turns her out. Mark takes the girl in, and Mabel, believing him to be the father, leaves him. A scandal erupts, and Mark's career and reputation hang in the balance.
"If Winter Comes" is an absorbing drama with good performances. Walter Pidgeon was a solid leading man and is sympathetic and strong here as the principled Mark; as the nasty Mabel, Angela Lansbury, then only 21, is very effective. With darker hair and the way her makeup is done, Deborah Kerr continues to remind me of Maureen O'Hara in her early films. She gives a lovely performance, a good juxtaposition to Lansbury's judgmental, snobbish Mabel. As Effie, Janet Leigh justifies her discovery by Norma Shearer; she sports a good English accent and gives a heartfelt portrayal. Binnie Barnes, Dame May Witty, Reginald Owen, Hugh French, and Dennis Hoey round out the excellent supporting cast.
Recommended, and not only to people who liked Mrs. Miniver.
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