The Sea Gull

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Basically an actors' film, for which Lumet has assembled a distinguished cast, found a marvellous lakeside location in Sweden, and vaselined the lens to give an air of autumn melancholy. That the result is sometimes dull and almost always unsatisfactory, despite excellent performances, is thanks partly to the traditional English-speaking failure to play Chekhov for comedy and let his tragedy take care of itself (hence the miscasting of Mason as a darkly brooding Trigorin, the over-intensity of Warner's Konstantin); and partly because the prerequisite of any Chekhov cast is a sense of familiarity bred of a lifetime together (so how come Signoret's Arkadina, with an accent you could cut with a knife, has the impeccably English Harry Andrews as a brother?).

By: TM

Release details

Duration: 141 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Sidney Lumet
Screenwriter: Moura Budberg
Cast: James Mason
Vanessa Redgrave
Simone Signoret
David Warner
Harry Andrews
Ronald Radd
Eileen Herlie
Kathleen Widdoes
Denholm Elliott
Alfred Lynch
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