The White Review

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Host: The White Review
Location: Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Mall, London SW1Y 5AH
Speaker: Brian Dillon


Please join us at the ICA this Thursday 25 October for a screening of Powell & Pressburger's classic Gone To Earth, chosen by Brian Dillon. A writer, editor and critic, Brian Dillon will introduce the film at 7.30pm and take questions after the screening. Drinks will be served in the ICA bar afterwards. Please note that reservation for this event is essential and can be done on the ICA website

Brian says: 'Gone To Earth is based on Mary Webb's melodramatic novel of 1917: the tale of a wild-natured young woman (played by Jennifer Jones) torn between the love of a meek Baptist minister (Cyril Cusack) and the local squire (David Farrar). Several of Powell and Pressburger's better known films — especially A Canterbury Tale and I Know Where I'm Going — are in thrall to a mystical view of British landscape. In Gone to Earth, that magic and Romanticism are weirdly lurid and over-stated; the film imputes an absurd degree of eroticism and energy to the Shropshire countryside where it was shot. It's an oddity, even an embarrassment, among Powell and Pressburger's films — compromised by co-producer David O. Selznick's obsessive relationship with Jones. But at a time when so many British artists and writers — from Tacita Dean to Robert Macfarlane — are revisiting Romantic conceptions of landscape, it's also a fascinating instance of a postwar picturesque.'

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