Early 20th century England: while toasting his daughter Catherine's engagement, Arthur Winslow learns the royal naval academy expelled his 14-year-old son, Ronnie, for stealing five ... See full summary »
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Early 20th century England: while toasting his daughter Catherine's engagement, Arthur Winslow learns the royal naval academy expelled his 14-year-old son, Ronnie, for stealing five shillings. Father asks son if it is true; when the lad denies it, Arthur risks fortune, health, domestic peace, and Catherine's prospects to pursue justice. After defeat in the military court of appeals, Arthur and Catherine go to Sir Robert Morton, a brilliant, cool barrister and M.P., who examines Ronnie and suggests that they take the matter before Parliament to seek permission to sue the Crown. They do, which keeps Ronnie's story on the front page and keeps Catherine in Sir Robert's ken. Written by
Just saw The Winslow Boy, and it was a real gem of a movie. Mamet has always been the king of brilliantly droll dialogue, the sort of dialogue that is funny not in its words but its performance, and Winslow Boy is no exception. With unusually clean language, Mamet has written a screenplay that illicits honesty from its players without ever being forced or awkward. It's gorgeous.
The cast lent itself beautifully to the script's Mametian style. Most poignant was Nigel Hawthorn, who managed to break my heart with the shift of an eye. It was the kind of razor-sharp subtlety that Mamet's writing (plays and screenplays) requires, and Hawthorn delivered it with soft spoken brilliance.
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