Review: ‘Saraband for Dead Lovers’

Colorful production, magnificent settings and costumes enhanced by unobtrusive use of Technicolor and a powerful melodramatic story of court intrigue at the House of Hanover in the early 18th century, add up to a firstrate piece of hokum entertainment.

Colorful production, magnificent settings and costumes enhanced by unobtrusive use of Technicolor and a powerful melodramatic story of court intrigue at the House of Hanover in the early 18th century, add up to a firstrate piece of hokum entertainment.

Taken from Helen Simpson’s novel, the screenplay sincerely captures the atmosphere of the period. It tells the poignant story of the unhappy Princess Dorothea, compelled to marry against her will the uncouth Prince Louis to strengthen his title to the kingship of England.

Without undue sentiment, and with emotion in the right key, the plot unfolds against the fascinating background of the Hanoverian court, with its intrigue and tragedies, its romances and miseries.

Reality is established by the excellent characterization of a well-chosen cast. Stewart Granger, as the Swedish Count Konigsmark, gives a performance that ranks with his best. Joan Greenwood is charming and colorful as the hapless Dorothea. Flora Robson is merciless as the arch intriguer at the court.

1949: Nomination: Best Color Art Direction

Saraband for Dead Lovers

UK

Production

Ealing. Director Basil Dearden, Michael Relph; Producer Michael Balcon; Screenplay John Dighton, Alexander Mackendrick; Camera Douglas Slocombe; Editor Michael Truman; Music Alan Rawsthorne; Art Director Jim Morahan, William Kellner

Crew

(Color) Extract of a review from 1948. Running time: 96 MIN.

With

Stewart Granger Joan Greenwood Flora Robson Francoise Rosay Anthony Quayle Frederick Valk
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