is a 1962 drama-comedy film directed by Ted Kotcheff
, starring James Mason
and John Mills
. It is based on the novel by Geoffrey Cotterell
, who also adapted it to screen together with Ivan Foxwell
. It was filmed in London
. Roy Kinnear
had a minor role in the film.
Clifford Southey (John Mills) is a clerk at a brokerage firm who is promoted to lieutenant colonel during the war. His subordinate officer, Captain Brett Aimsley (James Mason), was a partner at Southey's firm. Popular and charismatic, Capt. Aimsley is everything Col. Southey is not, but aspires to be. Unfortunately money is Aimsley's weakness. Achilles Heel and his profligacy sees him removed from Southey's command. Some time after the war Aimsley's comfortable exile in Tahiti
is rudely interrupted by the arrival of his old adversary now director of a hotel chain looking to expand into the burgeoning South Seas market.
What was virtually a two-hander featuring two of Britain's best film actors then, regretfully, broadens out into a not particularly funny or engaging comedy with stereotyped minor characters and a largely superfluous love interest. Some of the exchanges between Mills and Mason shine through the fog of ordinary, but the film loses most of its impetus. James Mason has exactly the right air of supreme self-confidence that the public school man exudes, the sense of being comfortable in his own skin whether in an Officers' Mess or on a South Sea Island
. John Mills,... Read More