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.

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Reviews of A Matter of Life and Death (1946)
aka Stairway to Heaven

Opening sequence
The full film at

General reviews & articles :-

Was there really that much bad feeling between the British people and the American troops that it needed this film to help us like each other again? These articles give a few hints.

After 4 years of near starvation rations (OK, they were healthy, but they were hungry) and no frills, is it any wonder that the girls went chasing after the GIs? They must have been like people from another planet. They were fit and healthy, well paid and had a seemingly endless supply of lots of things that hadn't been seen here for years. The articles imply that it was only prostitutes and "wild girls" that went chasing GIs. I'm sure it wasn't. Just ask your Mum or Grandma.

There was also some bad feeling at higher levels, especially from some Americans who wanted to make sure that the British didn't try to continue with their Empire after the war. This is discussed in some depth in Ian Christie's commentary on the Sony DVD.

Other productions:
There were various versions of the story that have been broadcast

There was also a musical based on the film performed at the King's Head Theatre, Islington in 1994
There has also been a full stage production by the Kneehigh Company at the Olivier Theatre in May/June 2007
Link to -> E-Trailer for the National Theatre's production

Behind the scenes
Some "behind the scenes" film clips have been found. These were taken when a group of Canadian soldiers & WACs visited the set. They are available to view, sadly without sound, at the National Film Board of Canada's web site

Finally, in this section, a mention of a few spoofs. Done with love and affection:

Reviews from the 1995 US release
In 1995, the film was re-released as Stairway to Heaven (A Matter of Life and Death).
Released by Columbia Pictures in association with Martin Scorsese.

Reviews about the Video :-

Reviews about the Sony DVD (Region 1: AMOLAD + Age of Consent) :-

Reviews about the Carlton DVD (Region 2) :-

Comparisons between different versions :-

Reviews about the new print :-

Reviews about the Books :-

Locations :-

Pictures from the PaPAS Gallery

Other P&P reviews