Donald Clarke

Whingeing about cinema and real life since 2009

Richard Attenborough’s two finest moments

Lord Attenborough was know for his warmth. But his best performances plumbed the darkest depths.

Mon, Aug 25, 2014, 23:33


Much has been written about Lord Attenborough over the past 24 hours. He deserves respect as a director of logistically complex epics. But, as I argue here, he should be best remembered as an actor. In later years, he was cuddly in Jurassic Park and Miracle on 34th Street. Those are, however, minor performances when set beside his Pinkie in Brighton Rock and his John Christie in 10 Rillington Place. There’s more than menace there. We see a clammy evil that sinks beneath the skin and into the bones. He really is up there with his Alec Guinness and his old mate John Mills as one of the most interesting actors of his generation. Check out this scene with future Doctor Who William Hartnell from Brighton Rock. Terrific stuff:

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