Top positive review
Sweet Yet Not Altogether Innocent
Reviewed in the United States on March 16, 2019
Only seen in passing, the husband basically abandons his wife, his 4 children from a previous marriage (their mother died), the children he had with his new (2nd) wife in the countryside while he goes off to live in London - so he can get ahead in the Civil Service. He has no intention of ever coming back. However, I can't help but deduce that he does send her money so she can support herself & all the children after a fashion because there is no way they can live without him doing such. Not a lavish lifestyle by any stretch of the imagination. But nothing is ever said/mentioned as to what money they have to live on. To be left to our own devices as to how they survive is a bit peculiar. But be that as it may, the story actually centers around the one son who later writes a semi-autobiographical book about these times in his life. It's rather sweet for the most part although it doesn't pull any punches when it comes to youth awkwardly exploring their developing interest in sex or when it comes to the village beautiful but definitely emotionally troubled young woman who sleeps with whomever she can lure into her house (or so it seems). She's one of several tragic figures in the village. However sentimental the film tends to get it never really gets maudlin. There's mirth created from simple joys, the comeuppance of the absolutely horrid school teacher, a suicide, a murder, a deserter, a tragedy for an elderly couple, the rivalry between to old women, etc. It is a colorful group of characters such as exists in many small communities for decades until these much more recent times. I recommend the film. It's not for everyone because it's pace is too slow for many; but, I enjoyed watching the film & perhaps you will as well.