7.2/10
2,128
30 user 17 critic

The Passionate Friends (1949)

Approved | | Drama | 26 January 1949 (UK)
The Passionate Friends were in love when young, but separated, and she married an older man. Then Mary Justin (Ann Todd) meets Steven Stratton (Trevor Howard) again and they have one last ... See full summary »

Director:

David Lean

Writers:

H.G. Wells (novel), Eric Ambler (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ann Todd ... Mary Justin
Claude Rains ... Howard Justin
Trevor Howard ... Professor Steven Stratton
Betty Ann Davies ... Miss Joan Layton
Isabel Dean ... Pat Stratton
Arthur Howard Arthur Howard ... Smith - the Butler
Guido Lorraine Guido Lorraine ... Hotel Manager
Marcel Poncin Marcel Poncin ... Hall Porter
Natasha Sokolova Natasha Sokolova ... Chambermaid
Hélène Burls Hélène Burls ... Flowerwoman
Jean Serret Jean Serret ... Emigration Official
Frances Waring Frances Waring ... Charwoman
Wenda Rogerson Wenda Rogerson ... Bridge Guest
Helen Piers Helen Piers ... 1st Woman - Albert Hall
Ina Pelly Ina Pelly ... 2nd Woman - Albert Hall
Learn more

More Like This 

Madeleine (1950)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The middle-class family of a young woman cannot understand why she delays in marrying a respectable young man. They know nothing about her long-standing affair with a Frenchman.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Ann Todd, Norman Wooland, Ivan Desny
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Fictionalized story of British aerospace engineers solving the problem of supersonic flight.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Ralph Richardson, Ann Todd, Nigel Patrick
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Just after World War I, the Gibbons family moves to a nice house in the suburbs. They lead an ordinary life throughout the years, but everything changes when World War II breaks out.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Robert Newton, Celia Johnson, Amy Veness
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Henry Hobson (Charles Laughton) is a successful bootmaker, a widower and a tyrannical father of three daughters. The girls each want to leave their father by getting married, but Henry refuses because marriage traditions require him to pay out settlements.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Charles Laughton, John Mills, Brenda de Banzie
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

This "story of a ship", the British destroyer H.M.S. Torrin, is told in flashbacks by survivors as they cling to a life raft.

Directors: Noël Coward, David Lean
Stars: Noël Coward, John Mills, Bernard Miles
Summertime (1955)
Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A lonely American woman unexpectedly finds romance in Venice, Italy.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Katharine Hepburn, Rossano Brazzi, Isa Miranda
Blithe Spirit (1945)
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Charles and his second wife Ruth are haunted by the spirit of his first wife, Elvira. Medium Madame Arcati tries to help things out by contacting the ghost.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Rex Harrison, Constance Cummings, Kay Hammond
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Set in the wake of the 1916 Easter Rising, a married woman in a small Irish village has an affair with a troubled British officer.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Trevor Howard, John Mills
Oliver Twist (1948)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An orphan named Oliver Twist meets a pickpocket on the streets of London. From there, he joins a household of boys who are trained to steal for their master.

Director: David Lean
Stars: Robert Newton, Alec Guinness, Kay Walsh
Adventure | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A humble orphan suddenly becomes a gentleman with the help of an unknown benefactor.

Director: David Lean
Stars: John Mills, Valerie Hobson, Tony Wager
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The career of a waitress takes off when she meets an amiable drunken Hollywood director.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Constance Bennett, Lowell Sherman, Neil Hamilton
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A beautiful blonde (Baker) joins a small group of men running an oil station in the Sahara Desert and starts the emotions soaring.

Director: Seth Holt
Stars: Carroll Baker, Peter van Eyck, Ian Bannen
Edit

Storyline

The Passionate Friends were in love when young, but separated, and she married an older man. Then Mary Justin (Ann Todd) meets Steven Stratton (Trevor Howard) again and they have one last fling together in the Alps. Written by David Wark <dwark@atge.automail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Their affair took on a life of its own.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Theatrical movie debut of Isabel Dean (Pat Stratton). See more »

Goofs

When Mary and Steven are chatting on the park bench, the cigarette switches from being in Mary's mouth to being out of the frame between shots. See more »

Quotes

Howard Justin: Don't you see that you two together are dangerous? You just have to keep away from one another. In the future, I'm going to see to it that you do.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Phantom Thread (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(uncredited)
Traditional
See more »

User Reviews

 
A story for adults
26 August 2008 | by samhill5215See all my reviews

Invariably this film is bound to be compared to "Brief Encounter" and I guess that's to be expected given they were both directed by David Lean, starred Trevor Howard and featured adultery. Frankly I think any comparison to be unfair because that's where their similarities end. I've seen both and I favor "Passionate Friends". I should add that Ann Todd is not one of my favorite performers. Her demeanor can be expressionless and somewhat off putting. But here she truly shines. In Lean's extensive close ups she reveals inner feelings without uttering a word. And her smiles are explosively radiant. She utterly owns this part. The male parts are equally excellent. All the performances wrap the viewer with their passion and involve him in the characters' fates. This is not light viewing. It's an emotional roller coaster and as the climactic finale unfolded I found myself talking to the screen trying to influence the outcome. Without a doubt this is a story by adults, for adults. Highly recommended.


11 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 30 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

26 January 1949 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

One Woman's Story See more »

Filming Locations:

Chamonix, Haute-Savoie, France See more »

Edit

Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,335
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cineguild See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Your Next Binge Watch Awaits

Looking for something to watch? Check out IMDb's "What to Watch" series to find out what's really worth watching.



Recently Viewed