For a few years in the 1960s, Clive Donner, who has died aged 84 after suffering from Alzheimer's disease, was among the leading film directors of swinging London. Unfortunately, when London stopped swinging, so did Donner. The four films that made his name were a low-budget adaptation of Harold Pinter's play The Caretaker (1963); Nothing But the Best (1964), a wicked satire on the British class structure; the farcical What's New Pussycat? (1965); and the coming-of-age comedy Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush (1968).
Already in his 30s when he started directing, Donner gained a reputation for being tuned in to "youth". His debut movie, The Secret Place (1957), a heist drama shot on location in the East End, had David McCallum as a Brandoesque leather-jacketed "crazy mixed-up kid".
The Heart of a Child (1958) concerned a boy and his St Bernard dog, Rudi,
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