Landfall (1949) Poster


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A simple story, well told
Kim Harris2 December 2004
Being something of a Nevil Shute devotee, I have been trying to track down a copy of this film for some time and finally succeeded.

This is one of Shute's simpler stories but in common with most of his novels, it concerns the issues of good people doing a job well. It should be read, or viewed, bearing in mind the time that it was written and the social and political climate of the time.

Landfall is no exception to this caveat applicable to many films of the time. I was relieved to find that this was a straightforward adaptation of the novel and was told without any twists and turns and unnecessary changes to the plot (unlike "Far Country" - a mangled adaptation of a later Shute novel).

I was also pleasantly surprised to find that the acting was much better than I expected in a 1949 film of this type. The issues of class difference were nicely handled and the story is just enough to fill the time. The main protagonists are portrayed well by the leads, particularly Patricia Plunkett, who resists the temptation to overdo the differences between her barmaid character and her flying officer boyfriend. A few of the lesser parts are a little conventionally and slightly woodenly handled but the ensemble of Maurice Denham, Kathleen Harrison, Nora Swinburne and Margaretta Scott are reliable.

The early flying scenes are reasonably convincing but they go downhill somewhat with the special (or not so special) effects in the bomb trials. This really doesn't matter too much in the context of this type of film where the important aspects are the story and the character development.

A simple story, well told. It would be nice to see it added to the collection of available classic movies on DVD.
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British war picture is an interesting morality play
Leofwine_draca28 February 2017
Warning: Spoilers
LANDFALL is an interesting little war picture, made in Britain in 1949 and long forgotten by most people - that is until it showed up on the Talking Pictures TV channel (God bless 'em) here in the UK. The film is an interesting little morality play in which a good-natured RAF man (played by Michael Denison in the usual British stiff upper lip spirit) accidentally blows up a British submarine that had strayed into the wrong waters.

The story that follows is somewhat slow and stately, but always engaging. Denison's protagonist is a sympathetic one who undergoes a pretty dark story and it all builds to an effective and surprising climax that works a treat. The supporting cast is full of familiar faces including Maurice Denham, a youthful David Tomlinson, the reliable Sebastian Shaw, and a trio of newcomers who would become familiar faces in future years (Paul Carpenter, Harry Fowler, and Laurence Harvey).
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Shute To Keel
writers_reign22 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This entry has a special place in my affections; after watching it I made a point of noting it was based on a novel by Nevil Shute, of whom I had never heard. I went the next day to my local library in search of the novel and in lieu of Landfall itself - presumably out on loan - I took out another Shute title and enjoyed it so much that I eventually bought every Shute novel and still re-read them with enormous pleasure. I was slightly concerned that this early effort would not hold up but I was pleasantly surprised that it still held my attention although not as richly detailed as the novel. I thought Patricia Plunkett caught Mona particularly well, not a raving beauty nor quite an English rose but a warm, level-headed ideal wife-in-the-making. Glad to find it again.
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Acceptable war film
Marlburian21 February 2017
This is an acceptable WWII film that I watched courtesy of Talking Pictures TV channel, with the scenes featuring aircraft offering something for aviation enthusiasts.

The first few minutes plodded a bit with one protracted discussion between Rick and Mona and then another between Rick and newly-arrived pilot Binks; the "musical" efforts of the latter were almost irritating. But unlike another reviewer here on IMDb I thought there was good chemistry between Rick and Mona - and between Rick and Binks.

Denison's initial breeziness irked somewhat, but he performed well enough after he thought he'd sunk a British submarine. The sub-theme of class difference didn't quite work because Patricia Plunkett as Mona seemed too superior for a barmaid working in a pub popular with servicemen.

The actors playing senior naval and air-force officers were effective.

After I'd watched the film I thought that it seemed very much like a plot by Nevil Shute, and a check of IMDb showed that it was.
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Wooden stars Lack charisma
malcolmgsw7 May 2011
Warning: Spoilers
One has to wonder what film goers of the late 40s made of this film when compared to the glossy Hollywood films.After all in the states this film would probably have Clark gable and Lana Turner in the lead.instead we have a rather wooden Michael Denison playing opposite a rather plump Patricia Plunkett.They have absolutely no charisma and their scenes together are the background we are told that the class divide no longer exists when in fact it is abundantly there for all to see.Almost as unbelievable as the romance is the scene of the bomb trial.The plane being piloted by Denison breaks up in mid air and crashes in to the sea.He is allowed to survive the crash to provide a happy ending.There are some new faces to be seen including Laurence Harvey and David Tomlinson.However it is unlikely that this sort of tosh would have been enough to tempt cinema-goers into their local ABC to view this.
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