L-Shaped Room, The (Columbia 1962, Tom Bell, Leslie Caron)

The L-Shaped Room

Leslie Caron (Gigi, An American in Paris) earned one of her two Academy Award nominations for her role in The L-Shaped Room as a young French woman living on her own in low-rent London. Jane (Caron), secretly pregnant from the boyfriend she left behind, moves into a London boarding house where her colorful neighbors become a new community of support and struggle for her.

She falls into a romance with failed writer Toby (Tom Bell), who himself has a secret admirer in Johnny (Brock Peters), while her lesbian neighbor Mavis (Cicely Courtneidge) tries to offer advice. Everyone assumes that Jane will get an abortion, but her willful independence and self-assertive refusal to listen to others leads her into more problems that she counted on.

The Smiths open their 1986 album The Queen is Dead with a short musical clip from The L-Shaped Room of Mavis (Cicely Courtneidge) leading the tenants in a Christmastime round of “Take Me Back To Dear Old Blighty.”

Cast: Leslie Caron, Tom Bell, Anthony Booth, Avis Bunnage, Cicely Courtneidge, Gerry Duggan, Mark Eden, Verity Edmett, Bernard Lee, Harry Locke, Brock Peters, Patricia Phoenix, Jennifer White, Emlyn Williams

Writer and Director: Bryan Forbes
Producers: Richard Attenborough, James Woolf
Original Story: Lynne Reid Banks
Director of Photography: Douglas Slocombe
Editor: Anthony Harvey
Composer: John Barry

UK / Columbia / 124 minutes / 1962

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