Sons and Lovers - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Sons and Lovers Reviews

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½ February 21, 2016
If this movie had been made a few years later a lot more could have been done with the Lawrence book on which it is based. (His Lady Chatterly's Lover was being un-banned in England the year the film was released). For a story depicting a young man's struggles to feel comfortable in a relationship, the movie is mostly passionless - and that is what weighs it down. I would have put the father more into the background too (where he largely belongs) even though Trevor Howard gives a strong performance. Dean Stockwell is also good as Paul, conveying the intelligence and confidence yet confusion of the main character.
Listen out in the score for a strange use of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, when the husband brings his wife a cup of tea to her in bed the morning after one of their rows. Or did my ears deceive me?
November 23, 2014
***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.***
January 29, 2014
Nicely done if not somewhat boring. A young Dean Stockwell is very good but the story seems dated and unoriginal to me.
January 30, 2013
I don't like that girl who played his young love, her mouth goes places when it opens.
Super Reviewer
July 2, 2012
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.
August 2, 2011
More unknown than a 1933 film!
Super Reviewer
June 7, 2011
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.
½ February 25, 2011
good drama best pic nominee
Super Reviewer
½ February 16, 2011
It was ok. The acting was surprisingly realistic and there was not a bad performance to be found.

However, I didn't find the plot very interesting and I found the movie to be a bit boring.
February 27, 2010
I loved this movie. Dean Stockwell is amazing.
August 15, 2009
Very excellent movie.
February 25, 2009
Beautifully shot. Mr and Mrs Morel's relationship is well done, but the radical plot changes and omissions leave Paul's relationships with his mother, Miriam, and Clara underexplored and explained.
½ October 24, 2008
I had to scrounge the UK Amazon site for a used copy of this and fight to watch it despite the region code... and it was worth the cost and effort! Why in heaven's name is a movie nominated for that many Oscars so hard to find?
Ignore the 2003 remake. This is the stuff. The actors do D.H. Lawrence proud.
Super Reviewer
July 24, 2008
want to see this because it won best picture with the NBR, won best picture with the NYFC, was nominated for best picture at the golden globes, and at the oscars
December 13, 2007
what kinda mess is this???
November 11, 2007
best adaptation, even though it does have dean stockwell trying to be english
½ June 14, 2007
Fine performances from all, especially a young Dean Stockwell doing a fantastic English accent. Fantastic direction by Jack Cardiff and a "true to the novel" script
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