Entertaining Mr. Sloane

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"Nobody's perfect."
  • NR
  • 1970
  • 1 hr 34 min
  • 6.4  (726)

Entertaining Mr. Sloane from 1970 is a black comedy film directed by Douglas Hickox and based on the play by Joe Orton. The movie features a star-studded cast, including Beryl Reid, Harry Andrews, and Peter McEnery. The film is set in 1960s London and follows the story of Mr. Sloane (Peter McEnery), a handsome and charming young man who is hired by the middle-aged and lonely Kath (Beryl Reid) as her lodger. Kath is immediately attracted to Mr. Sloane, and the two begin to develop a strange and complicated relationship.

Kath's elderly father, Kemp (Harry Andrews), also takes a liking to Mr. Sloane and invites him to work on his garden. However, when Kemp discovers that Mr. Sloane is hiding a dark past, their affection for him turns into suspicion and resentment. As the plot unfolds, the three characters become embroiled in a twisted web of deceit, manipulation, and sexual tension.

The movie is a dark and subversive comedy that delves into themes of sexuality, power, class, and morality. It offers a biting commentary on the hypocrisies and repressions of the British middle class, as well as the ways in which individuals use their sexuality and attractiveness to manipulate and gain power over others.

One of the standout performances in the film is that of Beryl Reid, who brings a complex and nuanced portrayal of Kath to the screen. Reid perfectly captures the character's mix of vulnerability, desperation, and sexual desire, as well as her deep insecurities and need for validation. Her interactions with Mr. Sloane are electric and intense, highlighting the erotic charge that permeates the film.

Peter McEnery is also excellent as Mr. Sloane, delivering a pitch-perfect blend of charm, wit, and danger. He exudes a sense of mystery and intrigue that draws the other characters in, while at the same time keeping them at a safe distance. His performance is crucial to the film's success, as it sets the tone for the dark and foreboding atmosphere.

Harry Andrews, meanwhile, brings a sense of gruff, no-nonsense authority to the role of Kemp. He provides a counterpoint to the other characters' more outlandish antics, grounding the film in a sense of realism and moral clarity. His character's growing suspicion of Mr. Sloane also adds an element of tension and suspense to the plot, making the audience question their own allegiances.

Overall, Entertaining Mr. Sloane is a thought-provoking and entertaining film that stands as a testament to Joe Orton's unique and innovative voice in British theater. It remains an important cultural artifact of the 1960s, reflecting the turbulent and changing times in which it was made. Fans of black comedy, satire, and character-driven drama will find much to enjoy in this underrated gem.

Entertaining Mr. Sloane is a 1970 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 34 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.4.

Entertaining Mr. Sloane
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 34 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.4  (726)