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A Taste of Honey

A Taste of Honey (1961)


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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 2



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Average Rating: 4/5
User Ratings: 2,346

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Movie Info

Director Tony Richardson adapted the screenplay of A Taste of Honey from the "kitchen sink" stage play by Shelagh Delaney. Rita Tushingham plays a working-class British teenager, living with her drink-sodden, libertine mother Dora Bryan. Denied affection by her selfish mother, Tushingham is pushed further in the background when Bryan impulsively marries her latest boyfriend Robert Stephens. The girl takes a job at a shoe store, then moves in with her kindly homosexual employer Murray Melvin. The

Nov 28, 1995

Westchester Films

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All Critics (10) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (8) | Rotten (2) | DVD (1)

[A Taste of Honey] has an earthy gusto and sincerity that lift its somewhat downbeat theme and drab surroundings.

March 26, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

A perfect example of how the 'New British Cinema' of the late '50s and early '60s has dated and become almost unwatchable.

June 24, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Freed from the constricting confines of the stage, the shining honesty, the trials, the disenchantment of the drama's low-born Lancashire principals have become all the more striking and true.

May 20, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Tony Richardson, who directed this mess, was once quoted as saying, "The British cinema is the worst in the world," and he was in a position to know.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader | Comments (2)
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It might have been daring during its time, but is now outdated.

May 22, 2009 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Though outdated, this offebat, well-acted melodrama was a significant work in the British school of Kitchen Sink realism and in the career of Tony Richardson (better known for Tom Jones).

June 20, 2005 Full Review Source: EmanuelLevy.Com

Raw, poignant, powerful. One of the very best.

May 5, 2005 Full Review Source: Film Threat
Film Threat

A taste of the British "Kitchen Sink" school at its best.

July 30, 2003 Full Review Source: TV Guide's Movie Guide
TV Guide's Movie Guide

Tushingham's performance and lovely, open face are still a tonic.

November 19, 2002 Full Review Source: Guardian [UK]
Guardian [UK]

Skilful performances, subtle visuals and the power of Delaney's writing all contribute to a landmark in British cinema.

October 13, 2002 Full Review Source:

Audience Reviews for A Taste of Honey

A pretty good film showing what life is like for a working class teenager of Britain in the 60s. The narrative is fairly empty which made me feel like it was far too long and at times the acting isn't so great however overall I'd recommend it. It's not for everyone, but Tushingham and Melvin's performances are brilliant; especially Melvin who is absolutely fantastic.
May 31, 2012

Super Reviewer

I LOVE Rita Tushingham!

No one does "ackward but endearing" like she does.

This a really sweet (and sad film) film. A great example of the British "kitchen sink drama".
May 16, 2008
Robert C

Super Reviewer

Rita Tushingham arrived as an underdog star with "A Taste of Honey," an early Tony Richardson film about an adrift teen girl. Jo (Tushingham) isn't blessed with charm, money or good looks, and her unreliable mother (Dora Bryan) is a well-meaning but self-absorbed floozy. While Bryan's character chases another cold-hearted scoundrel as a temporary husband, neglected Jo begins a sweet romance with a black sailor (Paul Danquah). After her love ships out, she discovers she is pregnant. But she also has met Geoffrey (familiar character actor Murray Melvin), a young homosexual outcast whose kind heart is just what she needs.

"A Taste of Honey" is a melancholy tale with a notably unresolved ending. The chemistry between Tushingham and Danquah is not what it should be, but Bryan and Melvin are wonderful. Of course, Tushingham's ugly-duckling pathos is still irresistible. The film's workmanlike direction and lack of cultural reference points means it has aged fairly well, though the frowns about homosexuality and interracial relationships do seem somewhat dated today. John Addison adds a light, orchestral score, but oddly does not incorporate the well-known melody recorded by acts like the Beatles and Herb Alpert.
August 19, 2012
Eric Broome

Super Reviewer

A fine piece of British social realism. Rita Tushingham puts in a brilliant performance.
February 6, 2008
Emily B.

Super Reviewer

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  • A Taste of Honey (1961) (CA)
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