The title refers to the creatures a very poor addled old lady (Dame Edith Evans) imagines in her paranoid fantasies. They lurk behind every drip, drip, drip of a leaky faucet. They listen ... See full summary »
The title refers to the creatures a very poor addled old lady (Dame Edith Evans) imagines in her paranoid fantasies. They lurk behind every drip, drip, drip of a leaky faucet. They listen all coiled up in a silent radio. The old lady is on to all their tricks, and she tells them so repeatedly. She reports them regularly to the police who scoff at her behind her back. The whisperers, however, are only part of her fantasy life. She imagines also that she is a daughter of aristocracy, an heiress waiting for her money to arrive so that she can pay back the nice gentleman at the Welfare Board. Her routine is shattered irrevocably by the return of her thieving son and vagrant husband, a brief fling with stolen money ending dismally in the gutter where the poor prey on the poor. Written by
The old kitchen curtain is shown in scene after Archie leaves, while Margaret is moping around the apartment. The new curtains are shown again after she returns from seeing Mr. Conrad at the National Assistance Board. See more »
There are many good qualities in this study of paranoia, loneliness, ageing and exploitation, among other themes, with its virtues ranging from a great mood setting score by John Barry, to excellent camera angles and aptly stark sets, all of which fit in with the general atmosphere of the film. In an Oscar nominated role, Edith Evans also gives off a fine performance, and there is some good work with extended dissolves to edit between different shots. It is not an easy film to like and admire in spite of its virtues though. There are excesses of melodrama thrown in, such as cops and robbers, and these subplots serve to distract from the protagonist. The lack of dialogue at times is distracting in itself too, and there are also odd characters in small segments thrown in here and there that do nothing at all. The dual spoken narration is also rather awkward. Yes, there are some things that can be complained about here - one could also complain that the nastiness is excessive. There is still a lot that makes this a good film however, and these virtues definitely show through. It is an excellent film, but it may not satisfy all tastes. Bryan Forbes is a great director, and almost all his films are worth a look if one is interested in good directing regardless of the plot or characters.
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