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Barbara Vining, a teen-age girl in a small English town falls in love with her teacher Stephen Barlow, who has no interest in her other than as a pupil and has done nothing to encourage her. When his wife, Kay Barlow confronts her, Barbara runs off. Stephen follows her to try and explain to her how hopeless the situation is. When she doesn't return home, the gossip and rumors begin. Barbara's father, an intelligent man is torn between his parental love and his basic wisdom, and her aunt, a neurotic old maid who also had a hopeless love affair years before, appears pleased with the situation. Barlow is accused of many lurid crimes, despite the lack of any evidence, and his marriage and career are nearly ruined until Barbara returns three days later and clears him. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"Personal Affair" is from Rank Films and stars Leo Genn, Gene Tierney, and Glynis Johns. Johns was nearly 30 when she played Barbara Vining, a student in love with her teacher, Stephen Barlow (Genn). Stephen has Barbara come to his home for tutoring; while she's there, Barlow's wife Kay confronts Barbara about her feelings. Embarrassed and upset, Barbara runs from the house. A distressed Stephen calls her at home and arranges to meet her in an out of the way area. When Barbara doesn't come home, suspicion falls on Stephen.
This is a really neat and suspenseful film, thanks to its good cast, writing, and direction. The audience (this audience anyway) isn't really sure what went on between teacher and student, if anything, so it keeps you guessing as to what happened, and the gossip condemns Barlow.
Pamela Brown is terrific as Barbara's bitter aunt who seems to get a lot of pleasure out of the suffering of others; Walter Fitzgerald and Megs Jenkin are wonderful as Barbara's agonized parents. Johns is very sweet and comes off as very young and innocent. Leo Genn is always good. Tierney has probably the most interesting role as a beautiful, somewhat snobby woman who nevertheless is insecure. She does it very well.
Well worth seeing.
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