Londoners Arnold and Evelyn Boult had high hopes for the life of their son, Edward. His relatively short life ended up being one of privilege but irresponsibility. His life ended at age 23 when he was killed in battle in World War II. Arnold recounts pivotal moments in his son's life - such as a serious medical issue at age 5, near expulsion from a prestigious private school at age 12, and impregnating a girl with whom he had no intention of marrying at age 20 - and the extreme measures Arnold took to protect the name of his son. However, other things that Arnold did throughout Edward's life, including having an extramarital affair, show that his actions were perhaps more in the name of his own happiness and standing in the community, which eventually included being dubbed a Lord. His actions have dire consequences for many, including Evelyn, who slowly begins to hate her husband and who sadly admits that she never really understood or knew her son. But after Edward's death, Dr. Larry...Written by
The titular character of Edward is unseen in both the stage and film versions, his presence deemed unnecessary by the authors, as the father's ruthless, corruptive influence defines the boy's increasingly antisocial behaviors. As such, Edward's unseen but much-discussed character flaws are the core element of the tale. See more »
Near the beginning of the film, Arnold brings home a baby carriage. The gate to the front walk is open when he arrives, and he hurries through it, not closing it. However, from a shot inside the house looking out, the gate is closed. See more »
Some have commented that they felt that Spencer Tracy was miscast in this film, playing a character very different to the altruists that he typically plays, and being the only American among the principle cast. However, I believe that this perhaps is Tracy's strongest performance, partly because it is so different to his usual roles. Tracy plays a determined and unrelenting man with real strength, although as his wife, Deborah Kerr also has a number of strong scenes, particularly in the final half hour. The two lead performances are however the bulk of what makes this a good film. It is reasonably engaging, with gimmicks of the title character never on screen, and Tracy speaking to the viewer, to keep it interesting, but the plot is not too great in itself, and the story tires before the end. It is also a bit too stagy, which limits how involving it is to an extent. Nevertheless, despite any possible shortcomings, the powerhouse of acting, not only from Tracy and Kerr, but some of the supporting cast too, make this a film worth checking out.
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