Sons and Lovers (1960)
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as Walter Morel
as Paul Morel
as Gertrude Morel
as Clara Dawes
as Miriam Leivers
as William Morel
as Baxter Dawes
as Henry Hadlock
as Mrs. Leivers
as Mrs. Leivers
as Mrs. Radford
as Mrs. Anthony
as Mrs. Bonner
as Dr. Ansell
Critic Reviews for Sons and Lovers
The best one can promise those who like the book is that they will probably not be greatly disturbed by the adaptation and will see some elements capably dramatized.
Sons and Lovers is a well-made and conscientious adaptation of D. H. Lawrence's famed novel, smoothly directed by Jack Cardiff and superbly acted by a notable cast.
A slack and superficial adaptation of Lawrence's novel.
Somehow, this plainly euphemistic attitude toward Lawrence's fierce and fine account runs through the whole handsome picture and hobbles its real potential punch.
The film's period details are excellent, and the direction by cinematographer-turned-director Cardiff is first rate.
Audience Reviews for Sons and Lovers
***Due to the recent RT changes that have basically ruined my past reviews, I am mostly only giving a rating rather than a full review.***
Victorian morality is pitted against teenage sexual urges in a small mining town. D.H. Lawrence's concentration on the decay of old sexual mores is on full display here, but unfortunately the depth of his characters is not. Miriam, as the film presents her, is thoroughly naive and uninteresting, and her third act scenes seem inconsistent considering all that has come before. I also thought the Oedipal relationship between Paul and Gertrude could have been more developed. We don't need to be pounded over the head with it, but the connection between Paul's sexuality and his devotion to his mother could have been more obvious. With no small contribution from the fantastic performance by young Dean Stockwell, Paul is the only character who is fleshed out and developed. In Stockwell's hands, Paul is what he is in the book, a man who is out of place and ahead of his time but confined by the morality of his place and time. Some of the scenes between Clara and Paul would have fallen flat in the hands of a lesser actor, but with Stockwell, never has a game of cribbage been so smoldering. Operating within the standards of the time, Sons and Lovers does its best to convey sexuality without the tired Risky Business trains-through-tunnels metaphor, but for once I found myself hoping for voice overs that could feature some of Lawrence's original language, so rich in feeling and sound. Overall, this version of Sons and Lovers is quite good, but if only we were able to transport the 1960 version of Dean Stockwell into today's time, I think we would have a better, immortalized look at Lawrence's masterpiece.
Strong performances all around elevate this hard drama of crushed and stalled hopes. Not a surprise that this received many awards including several Oscar noms, the excellent cinematography won. A fine film from an era when cinema was about the human condition.
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