The Halfway House
|The Halfway House|
British quad poster
|Directed by||Basil Dearden|
|Produced by||Michael Balcon|
|Written by||Angus MacPhail, Diana Morgan|
|Based on||play The Peaceful Inn by Dennis Ogden|
|Music by||Lord Berners|
|Edited by||Charles Hasse|
|Distributed by||ABPC (UK)|
The Halfway House is a 1944 British drama film directed by Basil Dearden and starring Tom Walls, Françoise Rosay and Mervyn Johns (who appears with his own daughter, actress Glynis Johns). The film tells the story of ten people who are drawn to stay in an old hotel in a remote Welsh village. The film was shot at Barlynch Abbey on the Devon/Somerset border.
BFI Screenonline writes, "The high quality personnel involved and the tight, professional scripting mark the film out as one of the earliest templates of what would become the traditional Ealing style." 
- Mervyn Johns as Rhys
- Glynis Johns as Gwyneth
- Sally Ann Howes as Joanna French
- Richard Bird as Richard French
- Valerie White as Jill French
- Françoise Rosay as Alice Meadows
- Tom Walls as Captain Harry Meadows
- Guy Middleton as Captain Fortescue
- Alfred Drayton as William Oakley
- Esmond Knight as David Davies
- Philippa Hiatt as Margaret
- Pat McGrath as Terence
- John Boxer as John, Davies's doctor
- Roland Pertwee as prison governor
- Eliot Makeham as George, Davies's valet
The film premiered in London at the Regal, Marble Arch on 14 April 1944, and The Times reviewer wrote: "The film elusively obtains its effects when it appears to be least striving after them, and an occasional frisson is achieved by acute touches of direction which light up not only depths of human tension and unhappiness, but also unobtrusively reckon with their cause—the war."
George Perry wrote in Forever Ealing (1981): "No matter how well-acted, the fantasy is hard to sustain and never develops beyond a theatrical morality tale." while The Huffington Post reviewer writes, "I really can't recommend The Halfway House enough: unlike the more overt Ealing war films (which this resembles in many ways, not least the disparate group coming together and working together), this is subtler propaganda, and its overarching supernatural atmosphere is well done. Apart from that, however, it offers strong character portraits, great visual flourishes, and another solid turn from [Mervyn] Johns." Flickering Myth calls it "an unseen and unappreciated classic of British cinema".
- The Times, 14 April 1944, page 6: "Picture Theatres, Regal, The Halfway House".
- BBFC: The Halfway House (1944) Accessed 6 September 2015
- "The Halfway House". BFI.
- "BFI Screenonline: Halfway House, The (1944)".
- The Times, 17 April 1944, page 2: "New films in London - Regal", The Halfway House
- "The Halfway House".
- "The Great Ealing Film Challenge 48: The Halfway House (1944)". The Huffington Post UK.
- "DVD Review - The Halfway House (1944) - Flickering Myth". Flickering Myth.
|This article related to a British film of the 1940s is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|
|This article about a war drama film is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|