The Mind of Mr. Soames
|The Mind of Mr Soames|
|Directed by||Alan Cooke|
|Based on||novel by Charles Eric Maine|
|Music by||Michael Dress|
|Edited by||Bill Blunden|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
The Mind of Mr. Soames is a 1970 British-American sci-fi–drama film directed by Alan Cooke and starring Terence Stamp, Robert Vaughn and Nigel Davenport. The film is based on Charles Eric Maine's 1961 novel of the same name.
The film tells the story of a thirty-year-old man (John Soames) who has been in a coma since a brain injury during birth. Now revived, he shows the behavior of a child and is monitored by two doctors attempting to find out if he can be rehabilitated in the adult world.
- Terence Stamp as John Soames
- Robert Vaughn as Doctor Michael Bergen
- Nigel Davenport as Doctor Maitland
- Christian Roberts as Thomas Fleming
- Donal Donnelly as Joe Allan
- Norman Jones as Davis
- Dan Jackson as Nicholls
- Vickery Turner as Naomi
- Judy Parfitt as Jenny Bannerman
- Scott Forbes as Richard Bannerman
- Joe McPartland as Inspector Moore
- Pamela Moiseiwitsch as Melanie Parks
- Billy Cornelius as Sergeant Clifford
The Mind of Mr. Soames was an attempt by Amicus Productions to branch into the non-horror field (they had also tried to option the rights to Flowers for Algernon but had been unable to secure them). The large budget was provided by Columbia Pictures.
The film was released in theatres on 12 October 1970 in the United States, 26 March 1971 in Ireland, 18 June 1971 in Mexico. The film was released on DVD by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment on 4 March 2011.
The Mind of Mr. Soames was a failure at the box office.
Roger Greenspun of The New York Times wrote in his review: "There are some movies that do nothing right, no matter how well they do it, and such a movie is The Mind of Mr. Soames, not that it does anything well. But with each scene, each camera movement, each gesture from its large and dispirited cast, The Mind of Mr. Soames, which opened yesterday at the Cinema 57 Rendezvous, displays an emptiness and a falseness of response that is beneath even the inadequacy of its ideas and the banality of its plot. John Soames (Terence Stamp), in a coma for all of his 30 years, is finally brought to life by the super surgery of Dr. Bergen (Robert Vaughn) so that he may be educated according to the theories of Dr. Maitland (Nigel Davenport), director of the institute where he had been peacefuly sleeping. Between permissive Dr. Bergen and repressive Dr. Maitland a certain ideological conflict develops (e.g. "How often do you play—games—with him?" "Games? What do you mean, games!") that is the first and, I guess, final cause of the melodrama. But in the background there is a third doctor (Donal Donnelly), a source of hope who keeps his own counsel, patiently watches the wild child, and incidentally looks a bit like François Truffaut. The Mind of Mr. Soames is full of boldly introduced but ultimately undeveloped character clichés, which add a touch of bogus mystery to a film that is otherwise 100 per cent predictable. For example, Dr. Bergen drinks—too much—but nothing ever comes of it. And the callous TV director (Christian Roberts) who willfully almost wrecks Soames's belated childhood—what is his story, full of meaningless dark hints and fitful glimmerings? As Soames himself, a child of Frankenstein dressed in a mansized set of pink Dr. Dentons, without booties, Terence Stamp must have the best fun in the movie. Not only does he get to cry a lot and to play with toys, but he also is allowed at one time or another to dump baby food on all his doctors and keepers—with which inspiration The Mind of Mr. Soames exhausts itself and falls into moral platitude and heavy breathing."
- "The Mind of Mr. Soames (1969)". British Film Institute. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
- "The Mind of Mr. Soames". Turner Classic Movies. Atlanta: Turner Broadcasting System (Time Warner). Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Ashley 2005, p. 95.
- Maine, Charles Eric (1961). The Mind of Mr. Soames (1st ed.). London: Hodder & Stoughton. ASIN B0000CL7EE.
- Bryce 2000, p. 48.
- "The Mind of Mr. Soames". Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Culver City, California: Sony Pictures Entertainment. 4 March 2011. ASIN B00460WJBI. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Greenspun, Roger (13 October 1970). "Screen: Wild Child of 30:'Mind of Mr. Soames' Stars Stamp". The New York Times. New York City: The New York Times Company. Retrieved 20 November 2016.
- Ashley, Michael (2005). Transformations: The Story of the Science Fiction Magazines from 1950 to 1970 (Liverpool University Press - Liverpool Science Fiction Texts & Studies) (1st ed.). Liverpool: Liverpool University Press. p. 95. ISBN 978-0853237792.
- Allan Bryce, ed. (2000). Amicus: The Studio That Dripped Blood. Liskeard: Stray Cat Publishing Ltd. p. 48. ISBN 978-0953326136.