Rent Went the Day Well? (1942)

4.1 of 5 from 96 ratings
1h 28min
Rent Went the Day Well? Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
  • General info
  • Available formats
Synopsis:
Based on the story by Graham Greene, 'Went the Day Well?' is a classic piece of propagandist entertainment, a warning to British citizens to remain ever alert for the arrival of the enemy. A rare foray into darker material by Ealing Studios, Alberto Cavalcanti's film tells the story of a quiet English village which has been infiltrated by German soldiers masquerading as British troops, leaving the plucky villagers to uncover the plot and fight back.
Actors:
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Directors:
Producers:
Michael Balcon
Writers:
Graham Greene, John Dighton, Diana Morgan, Angus MacPhail
Studio:
Optimum
Genres:
British Films, Action & Adventure, Classics, Drama
Countries:
UK
BBFC:
Release Date:
25/07/2011
Run Time:
88 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
None
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
Colour:
B & W
BBFC:
Release Date:
25/07/2011
Run Time:
93 minutes
Languages:
English
Subtitles:
English Hard of Hearing
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 1.66:1
Colour:
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
B
Bonus:
  • 'Yellow Caesar': A Short Film by Alberto Cavalcanti
  • 'BBC Radio 3 The Essay - British Cinema of the 1940's': Went the day Well? - Audio Featurette

Rent other films like Went the Day Well?

Reviews (2) of Went the Day Well?

Careless talk costs lives. - Went the Day Well? review by Steve Mason

Spoiler Alert
26/07/2012

Exciting propaganda of German platoon which takes over a small English village as a base for invasion. Villagers fight back! Incredibly effective and inspiring, for what is really a public information film!

1 out of 1 members found this review helpful.

Sinister Beauty - Went the Day Well? review by CH

Spoiler Alert
12/05/2020

Although this film opens after the war as a villager stands in a churchyard and recalls something of events a few years earlier, in fact the film was made and released in 1942.

Based on a story by Graham Greene which he collected only towards the end of his life (though it had appeared, strangely enough, in a children's anthology), it was directed by Brazilian-born Cavalcanti whom he much admired. Set during the Whitsun weekend of 1942, it tells of a sleepy village (named Bromley End, and filmed in Turville) where its array of inhabitants found themselves at the vanguard of a world turned upside down. Here we have characters ranging from a gentle, strong-minded vicar to a bedraggled poacher who is passing on the tricks of his trade to a very young Harry Fowler. Scenes range from a village store, and telephone exchange to a Manor House lined with pictures along its twisting staircase.

Among the cast are many canny women (among them Elizabeth Allan and Thora Hird), who, as events unfold, come increasingly to the fore, even the fire: there is some startling violence here, all the more effective as it is not drenched in blood but of a piece with a film in which there is continual use of light and shadow, whether by night or day, inside or out. The cinematography is wonderful. As James Agee wrote in his review when the film was duly released in America some while later (mid-1944), he thought the best of it was "in its relating of the people and their action to their homes, their town, their tender, lucid countryside. As the audience watches from a hill, with the eyes at once of a helpless outsider, a masked invader, and a still innocent defender, a mere crossroads imparts qualities of pity and terror which, to be sure, it always has, but which it seldoms shows us except under tilted circimstances. And at moments, when the invaders prowlingly approach through the placid gardens of the barricaded manor in the neat morning light, the film has the sinister, freezing beauty of an Auden prophecy come true".

For some years, even decades, the film fell from sight, even though there is much in it of a piece with eternal Ealing delights. It is now well established as a classic of English film making, one which time and again takes by surprise even those who have already seen it.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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