Ralph Breaks the Internet
Mission: Impossible - Fallout
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All Critics (12)
| Top Critics (1)
| Fresh (12)
| Rotten (0)
| DVD (2)
Messrs. Powell & Pressburger achieve, unobtrusively, a remarkable study of a place and a people. This study is never quaint, traveloguish, educational or condescending.
One of the greatest (and sadly most forgotten) romantic comedies ever, which has not a cracking script, but some trademark-terrific visuals.
If the fundamental framework had been sound this could have been a first-rate film; it is in any case a piece of first-rate entertainment.
Love competes against money in '40s classic.
... has all the sensitive and intelligent touches that usually go with a Powell and Pressburger film.
Another charming entry from Powell and Pressburger.
Scotland and her people are the unbilled background charm of this typical romance that occurs for our heroine while she's invested to marry a millionaire and the life of luxury that money can buy. Its fun that the mid-1940's Britain can seem so exotic while being so familiar.
By all accounts and measures, I Know Where I'm Going is an assembly line romantic comedy. If there's any elevation to be found here (which I think there is), it's all due to Pressburger's tight script and Powell's inventive directing. This film is nothing to write home about, but it would have been a lot worse, and a lot less notable if it weren't in the hands of one cinema's greatest filmmaking teams.
The only reason this unobtrusive film is given a place in the Criterion Collection correlates directly to the involvement of directors Powell and Pressburger. Their films are visually stunning, critically lauded, and have the interpersonal struggles and calculated nuances of a Tennessee Williams play. Still, this daftly titled film can't touch their magnum opus, The Red Shoes. It's a beautifully shot film, even for the black and white format of the time it was made. If the setting wasn't in the Scottish highlands, there wouldn't be anything special about this film. The plot follows gold digging non-descript Joan Webster (Hiller) as she tries to wed an octogenarian businessman who plans the wedding's location for the far off island of Kiloran. Joan becomes trapped on a nearby isle during a gale, where she meets an eagle obsessed countryman, lowly servant Katrina, and a Naval Captain who we all accurately predict she falls for in 40's clichéd fashion. This formula usually works quite well, but the lack of comedy and the Pressburger/Powell styling made this less about a frivolous romantic plot and more about Scottish culture, customs, and traditions. There's even an intensely detailed account of a curse on the Captain, which I must admit had a slight Gaelic charm, but was just another avenue of thought that contributed nothing to the film. It's not quite romance, drama, or comedy, but there is in fact something worth watching for everyone.
Powell and Pressburger's romance of the Scottish isles has Wendy Hiller as Joan Webster, seeking money and a marriage of advantage to the (unseen) Sir Robert, out on the mysterious isle of Killoran.
Of course, the Scottish climate makes sure she breaks her journey, which is where the dashing laird Torquil (Roger Livesey) comes in, with falcons, fog-bound locations, and sinister family curses.
Perhaps the best scene of all is at the Campbell's wedding anniversary ceildh, where Torquil translates a Gaelic ballad for Joan. This is a black and white vision of a heavenly Scotland which probably never existed, but in Powell's expert direction that doesn't matter. Lovely.
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