Review: ‘The Demi-Paradise’

Script consists of a wealth of character drawings with a thin web of a story about a young Russian engineer, the inventor of a new-type propellor for use on icebreakers. He arrives in England some months before the war, with humorous misconception of the average native of Britain. He is bewildered by its conventions, smugness and capacity for muddling through. It takes him some time to know the people for what they really are, with their foibles, humors and idiosyncrasies. There is a slight love story with an English girl.

Script consists of a wealth of character drawings with a thin web of a story about a young Russian engineer, the inventor of a new-type propellor for use on icebreakers. He arrives in England some months before the war, with humorous misconception of the average native of Britain. He is bewildered by its conventions, smugness and capacity for muddling through. It takes him some time to know the people for what they really are, with their foibles, humors and idiosyncrasies. There is a slight love story with an English girl.

Laurence Olivier, replete with Russian accent, gives a dignified and serious performance full of sincerity and repose. Ablest support comes from Felix Aylmer, veteran stage actor, as a wealthy shipbuilder with a series of eccentricities that would excite risibility in a mummy.

The Demi-Paradise

UK

Production

Two Cities. Director Anthony Asquith; Producer Anatole de Grunwald; Screenplay Anatole de Grunwald; Camera Bernard Knowles; Music Nicholas Broadszky

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1943. Running time: 115 MIN.

With

Laurence Olivier Penelope Ward Marjorie Fielding Margaret Rutherford Leslie Henson Felix Aylmer

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