Review: ‘Darling’

In many ways, this Joseph Janni production can be described as a British Dolce Vita. Its central character is a lovely, young, irresponsible and completely immoral girl, who can see little wrong in jumping in and out of bed with a complete lack of discrimination, and who goes on a shop-lifting expedition in one of London's more famous stores just for kicks.

In many ways, this Joseph Janni production can be described as a British Dolce Vita. Its central character is a lovely, young, irresponsible and completely immoral girl, who can see little wrong in jumping in and out of bed with a complete lack of discrimination, and who goes on a shop-lifting expedition in one of London’s more famous stores just for kicks.

While a fair slice of the credit must go to the three stars and to scripter Frederic Raphael, the lion’s share is due to John Schlesinger, a documentary-trained director who skillfully uses that technique to give in-depth portraits to three principals.

Everyone calls Diana Scott (Julie Christie) ‘darling’. She’s that kind of girl – gay, good-looking, amusing company. She is married to a young, immature man, and once she has met the more sophisticated Robert (Dirk Bogarde) there is little doubt that the marriage will go on the rocks. He, too, is married, but leaves his family to set up house with her. But no sooner has she met Miles (Laurence Harvey) than she hops into bed with him.

Christie almost perfectly captures the character of the immoral Diana, and very rarely misses her target.

1965: Best Actress (Julie Christie), Original Story & Screenplay, B&W Costume Design.

Nominations: Best Picture, Director

Darling

UK

Production

Vic. Director John Schlesinger; Producer Joseph Janni; Screenplay Frederic Raphael; Camera Ken Higgins; Editor James Clark; Music John Dankworth; Art Director Ray Simm

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1965. Running time: 128 MIN.

With

Julie Christie Dirk Bogarde Laurence Harvey Roland Curran Jose Villalonga Basil Henson
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