The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie

  • 1969
  • Movie
  • PG
  • Comedy, Drama

Prime, indeed. In the Edinburgh of 1932, Smith teaches in an upscale private girls' school. She inspires her students with her ideas on art, music, and politics--the latter based on romantic notions that lead her to express admiration for the fascisti in Italy. Smith has assembled a small coterie of adoring students--including Carr, Grayson and Franklin--who...read more

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Prime, indeed. In the Edinburgh of 1932, Smith teaches in an upscale private girls' school. She inspires her students with her ideas on art, music, and politics--the latter based on romantic notions that lead her to express admiration for the fascisti in Italy. Smith has assembled a small

coterie of adoring students--including Carr, Grayson and Franklin--who follow her around. She even arranges to take them with her on one of her occasional visits to the country home of Jackson, a fellow teacher who is more interested in her than she is in him. Actually, she is romantically

involved with Stephens, another teacher and a sometime painter, whose jealousy she hopes Jackson's attentions will arouse. Stephens, however, a married Catholic with children, balks at breaking up his marriage to make a commitment to Smith. Dour headmistress Johnson, meanwhile, takes a dim view of

Smith's influence and has her suspicions about the impropriety of the teacher's actions. Young follower Franklin, annoyed by Smith's evaluation of her as scholarly and practical--and of Grayson as a romantic beauty--determines to seduce Stephens away from Smith.

Celia Johnson makes a formidible adversary for Smith, and Smith's then-husband Stephens is dead-on right as the art professor. Pamela Franklin, accomplished and lovely, does the best she can with the film's most difficult plot-fulcrum role. The movie loses some steam when it turns to romantic

melodrama, but Smith keeps you watching to see how she works with it. Work she does, managing at the same time to make her unique brand of magic look easy as breathing. The film is slightly marred by Rod McKuen's insufferable title song.

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  • Rating: PG
  • Review: Prime, indeed. In the Edinburgh of 1932, Smith teaches in an upscale private girls' school. She inspires her students with her ideas on art, music, and politics--the latter based on romantic notions that lead her to express admiration for the fascisti in I… (more)

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