Film Preview: Joseph Losey Season, 1 July – 2 August, Filmhouse, Edinburgh

31 May

The biography of filmmaker Joseph Losey, a celebration of whom is taking place at the Filmhouse from Wednesday 1 July until Sunday 2 August,  sounds like the plot of a movie that’s just begging to be made.

Quoting at length from the Filmhouse’s website:

Losey (1909-1984) arrived in Hollywood at the age of 35, immersed in Marx, Freud and Stanislavsky, and highly experienced in both theatre (left-wing, avant-garde and commercial) and radio.

After making only five films, however, Losey fell victim to the House Un-American Activities Committee and went into exile in Britain, where for years he lived hand-to-mouth, working pseudonymously under Special Branch surveillance, fearful of deportation.

But he hung on, making what he could of unpromising projects, often working with other blacklisted writers and forming alliances with actors such as Dirk Bogarde and Stanley Baker and some of Britain finest cinematographers.

With their help he produced a remarkable body of intense, politically acute work that placed its characters in visually precise social contexts.

How’s that for a story?

I’ll admit to not having seen of any of the films being shown or heard of many of them, though I’m a fan of Michael Redgrave (he was superb in both The Lady Vanishes and The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner) and Stanley Baker, who appear in the first two being screened.

The full list is:

  • Time Without Pity
  • The Criminal
  • The Damned
  • The Sleeping Tiger
  • King & Country
  • Accident
  • The Servant
  • Modesty Blaise
  • Secret Ceremony
  • The Go-Between
  • Mr Klein

That’s an impressive list of films.

Head to the Filmhouse website for full details of the screenings.


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