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The Browning Version (1951)

Not Rated | | Drama | 9 November 1951 (USA)
Forced to retire from an English public school, an unpopular professor must confront his failure as a teacher and husband.

Director:

Anthony Asquith

Writers:

Terence Rattigan (by), Terence Rattigan (screenplay)
Reviews
Nominated for 2 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 7 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Michael Redgrave ... Andrew Crocker-Harris
Jean Kent ... Millie Crocker-Harris
Nigel Patrick ... Frank Hunter
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Dr. Frobisher (as Wilfrid Hyde White)
Brian Smith Brian Smith ... Taplow
Bill Travers ... Fletcher
Ronald Howard ... Gilbert
Paul Medland Paul Medland ... Wilson
Ivan Samson Ivan Samson ... Lord Baxter
Josephine Middleton Josephine Middleton ... Mrs. Frobisher
Peter Jones ... Carstairs
Sarah Lawson ... Betty Carstairs
Scott Harrold Scott Harrold ... Rev. Williamson (as Scott Harold)
Judith Furse ... Mrs. Williamson
Learn more

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Storyline

Andrew Crocker-Harris, a classics teacher at an English school, is afflicted with a heart ailment and an unfaithful wife. His interest in his pupils wanes as he looks towards his final days in employment. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1993, director Mike Figgis was dressing for a dinner party at the home of Ridley Scott's producer and happened to switch on this version of the Terence Rattigan play. He became so riveted that he arrived late to the party. He explained to his host the reason for his tardiness. His host said that, coincidentally, he himself had recently optioned the remake rights and was looking for a director. Figgis went on to direct the 1994 remake (The Browning Version (1994)) with Albert Finney. See more »

Quotes

Andrew Crocker-Harris: You see, my dear Hunter, she is really quite as much to be pitied as I am. We are both of us interesting subjects for your microscope, hmmm! Oh, both of us needing something from the other to make life supportable for us... and neither of us able to give it. Two kinds of love, hers and mine. Worlds apart! Oh, I know now, but back when I married her, I did not think that they were incompatible, nor, I suppose, did she.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Startime: The Browning Version (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

Finale
(uncredited)
from Oliver Twist (1948)
Music by Arnold Bax
See more »

User Reviews

 
"A Profoundly Moving Film"
9 March 2001 | by hernebaySee all my reviews

With a screenplay by the author of the play on which it is based (Terence Rattigan), "The Browning Version", although it records the manners and morals of an age and social milieu that have now vanished, remains a powerful and deeply moving film, its essential insights intact, and of continued relevance to our own time.

Arthur Crocker-Harris (Michael Redgrave) is a master at an English public school. Once a brilliant young classicist and a promising poet, he has turned into a desiccated, unfeeling and spiteful pedant, despised by his colleagues and feared by his pupils. Ill-health has prompted his early retirement, but it is apparent that his departure will go unmourned, in contrast to that of his attractive and personable young wife (Jean Kent), who is well-liked by all.

The genius of this remarkable film consists in the effortless skill with which it inverts the viewer's initial perceptions. Dismissed as outdated and irrelevant after the Angry Young Men of the mid 50s rendered his middle-class scenarios unfashionable, Rattigan was a master technician of drama, and his dialogue and pacing are faultless. Michael Redgrave was born to play the role of Crocker-Harris, to which he brings a restraint and control that render his performance all the more affecting. Asquith shows remarkable judgment in refusing to manipulate the viewer's emotions with a schmaltzy soundtrack (except for a burst of Beethoven at the end, there is no music). In the event this is unnecessary. It is a rare film that moves me to tears, but "The Browning Version" wins this distinction. Do not waste your time on the 1994 re-make.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 November 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Konflikt des Herzens See more »

Filming Locations:

Dorset, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Javelin Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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