Gone To Earth
<strong>Rating: </strong>5/5Rate this
Time Out saysA film much maligned in its time, not least by producer David O Selznick, who issued an American version retitled The Wild Heart, incorporating additional footage directed by Rouben Mamoulian and running only 82 minutes. Mary Webb's 1917 novel was the archetypal bodice-ripper - wicked squire, pious yokels, adultery and redemption - out of which Powell and Pressburger made a visually spellbinding romance. Christopher Challis' photography evokes Shropshire and the Welsh borders so that you can smell the earth. Menace, the bloodlust of the chase (of the fox or the outcast sinner), is omnipresent as trees bend and wild creatures panic before an unseen primal force. Cruelty besides beauty sweeps these pastoral vistas. Forget Jones' rustic English (Kentucky? Australian?) and the melodramatic clichés (boots trampling posies): the haunting, dreamlike consistency recalls that other fairy story of innocence and menace, The Night of the Hunter. MHoy.