Blithe Spirit Review

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Charles and his second wife Constance, are haunted by the ghost of his first wife, Elvira. Medium Madame Arcati tries to help things out by contacting the ghost.


Noel Coward’s successful farce is an early entry in the cycle of post-mortem love stories, here transferred deftly, if unimaginatively, from stage to screen.

Rex Harrison, newly married to Constance Cummings, is haunted by the mischievous spirit of his first wife, Kay Hammond, who does her best to put a kibosh on the marriage by swanning sexily and insubstantially about the house insulting her and shifting things.

Margaret Rutherford enjoys herself as the crass medium called in to bust the ghost, and adds a low comedy touch among the sophisticated playing of the eternally triangular leading performers. Directed by David Lean, but not so as you’d notice.

An original concept which has been built on endless times, but this set the standard, even if the big-screen adaptation is at times a little tedious.