- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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the go between
- kevin sellers
This is probably the most "mainstream" of avant garde director Joseph Losey's films. Indeed, in its lovely English countryside setting and cinematography there is an almost Masterpiece Theatre feel to it that I'm sure gave Losey's more radical fans some pause. Still, the general accessibility and commercial appeal of this work should not detract from its overall excellence. Forty seven years after it first came out it remains for me one of the great cinematic explorations of an adolescent trapped in a world of mercurial, manipulative adults. And the performance of Dominique Guard as the thrilled, bewildered, saddened, and ultimately disillusioned thirteen year old protagionist is mesmerizing. Either Guard is an amazingly talented, natural actor or Losey is one hell of a good handler of actors. Probably a lot of both. And needless to say Julie Christie and Alan Bates, in their second film together after "Madding Crowd", playing the twin poles of the title character's conflict, are damn fine as well. And, as if that weren't enough, you have a magnificent Margaret Leighton performance as a shocked matriarch, a terse, well controlled Harold Pinter adaptation of L.P. Hartley's fine novel, and the best cricket sequence I've ever seen on film (not that I've seen all that many). Give it a well deserved A. P.S. The only criticism I have is the too on-the-nose-menacing score.
Lovely To Look At
A melodramatic adaption of the book *L.P. Hartley by Harold Pinter. The music by Michel LeGrand is applied with a heavy hand- and after a few viewings gets in the way of the drama. However, Pinter has adapted the novel's dialogue rather accurately, but some how the middle-class family in the novel was elevated to a grand mansion and an upper class family. The working screen play by Pinter has been published. When I saw this film in 1971, I was enchanted. Losely was a director who (like the better known David Lean) used dialogue sparingly and allows the audience to experience lingering scenic refreshments- which is one of the reasons why I like this film so much. As a movie for today's audiences- well, most people would fall asleep or loose interest early on because the end of the story is seen at the beginning and there are many "disruptive" flashbacks that would probably be considered "huh?!" Many people find this film confusing. My advice: watch it 2 or 3 times and give it a chance. Too bad it is not available on DVD with a "Making Of" backstory- ah, well perhaps someday... Oh Alan Bates is sooooo handsome in this film!
A Memorable & Moving Story
It's a beautiful romantic movie, beautifully filmed and acted. It's a story about forbidden love and the class structure in England as well. Once again Julie Christie and Alan Bates draw you into their relationship, as in Far from the Madding Crowd but without the happy ending.
Christie, Bates in intriguing drama
I saw "The Go-Between" in 1970 when it came out. Its attractive stars are Julie Christie and Alan Bates, still in their "early bloom," and the setting is a Masterpiece Theatre-like gorgeous English countryside and manor house. Directed by dark-ish director Joseph Losey, and with a script by playwright Harold Pinter, it tells the story of an illicit, hidden romance between Christie and Bates, and how a visiting child ends up being used as their go-between, and becomes complicit in keeping their relationship hidden. A lot of fine supporting actors are in the film: Margaret Leighton, Michael Redgrave, Michael Gambon, Edward Fox. The young child is effectively played by Dominic Guard. It's interesting, the stars are charismatic, and the background is beautiful to look at. (It was very well reviewed at the time. Strange I've never heard of it playing anywhere.)