Based on the novel by L.P. Hartley, The Go-Between links the present and the past taking an ageing bachelor back to the long hot summer when he was twelve and lost his boyish heart to a beautiful, headstrong young woman who used his adoration to suit her own purposes. Summer 1900: Leo is the guest of Marcus, a wealthy classmate, at a grand home in rural Norfolk. Leo is befriended by Marion (Julie Christie), Marcus's sister who is about to be engaged to Huge who is a viscount, however she has fallen in love with a handsome young tenant farmer (Alan Bates) who's class difference make an open affair unthinkable. She is unable to resist temptation though and sends messages to her lover to arrange a meeting through Leo, the go-between
Great band, great film.
- The Go-Between review by Steve Mason
It's often said that great books make bad films but that is clearly untrue and here is a prime example. This is a wonderful adaptation of L.P. Hartley's classic memory novel, scripted by Losey's frequent collaborator, Harold Pinter. The story is set in 1900, so it is late Victoria but visually it creates what is now my image of Edwardian rural England, across the class divides. A boy spends the summer at a country estate passing illicit messages between Julie Christie's aristocratic beauty, and Alan Bates' earthy farmer. The boy, Leo is unable to understand the repercussions of the relationship he helps to prosper. It is a slow, languid film set in the long summer of our distant pasts against the grey, drizzly world of the grown up Leo's present reality. From where he understands the past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. Losey is another American who made his way to the UK to escape the scrutiny of HUAC and his filmography is like a red album of consistent hits (with Modesty Blaise his Yellow Submarine).