The Masters  
The Powell & Pressburger Pages

Dedicated to the work of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger and all the other people, both actors and technicians who helped them make those wonderful films.

A lot of the documents have been sent to me or have come from other web sites. The name of the web site is given where known. If I have unintentionally included an image or document that is copyrighted or that I shouldn't have done then please email me and I'll remove it.

I make no money from this site, it's purely for the love of the films.

[Any comments are by me (Steve Crook) and other members of the email list]

  Steve's Logo

Original at Evening Standard Reviews

A Matter Of Life And Death (Re-issue)
(PG) David Niven, Roger Livesey, Kim Hunter, Raymond Massey.
Dir: Powell/Pressburger. UK. 1946. 104mins.

by Alexander Walker

Powell and Pressburger's innovative mix of reality and fantasy, monochrome and Technicolor, is being shown in a brand new print at the NFT.

Heaven can wait: David Niven and Kim Hunter
Heaven can wait: David Niven and Kim Hunter

David Niven plays the downed wartime pilot whose body lies on the operating table, hovering between life and death, while upstairs, in a heavenly courtroom, the arguments are mustered for and against letting him live.

Made in 1946 at the nudging of the Ministry Of Information, in the hope it would cement Anglo-American relations, the film too often feels as if it has literally set them in concrete. Ironically, its selection as the first Royal Film Performance went askew when the next day's papers criticised what their reviewers detected as cultural cringe in front of the Yanks.

Still, it's got a great cast, including Roger Livesey - star of the much superior The Life And Death Of Colonel Blimp - Raymond Massey, Marius Goring, Kim Hunter and Abraham Sofaer.

Back to index