No one need look further than Darling for a succinct guide to the reasons for the rapid decline of the British 'New Wave' in the '60s: the film supports the argument that the movement was stillborn. Frederic Raphael's script tramples its own studied issues (Third World poverty, corrupt Western values, jet-set alienation) under its equally studied Sophisticated Characterisation. Schlesinger's direction is a leaden rehash of ideas from Godard, Antonioni and Bergman, which nonetheless contrives to remain firmly rooted in British theatre of the Royal Court school. Excruciatingly embarrassing at the time, it now looks grotesquely pretentious and pathetically out of touch with the realities of the life-styles that it purports to represent.
Cast and crew