At a café on a railway station, housewife Laura Jesson meets doctor Alec Harvey. Although they are both already married, they gradually fall in love with each other. They continue to meet every Thursday in the small café, although they know that their love is impossible. Written by
Laura and Alec have lunch at the Kardomah. This was a real chain of coffee houses throughout England, a rival to the more ubiquitous Lyon's Corner Houses. See more »
When Laura buys a brandy for herself late in the film she hand over a single coin which the girl throws into the register without giving change. We later see that she rang up 10d, the price stated earlier in the film for the same drink. There was no 10d coin. See more »
I looked hurriedly around the carriage to see if anyone was looking at me - as if they could read my secret thoughts. No one was. Except a clergyman in the opposite corner. I felt myself blushing.
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Noel Coward's short play Still Life was an unusual stepping off point for his full-length screenplay for Brief Encounter, which had some changes (notably in the relationship of our hero and heroine, or how far it gets) and gave Trevor Howard and Celia Johnson excellent roles in this very British mega-weepie. Rachmaninov's 2nd helps considerably, but the housewife and the doctor and their doomed romance, however improbable, manages to be both funny and touching, and Johnson in particular manages to put across the helplessness of a happily married woman who lets a new window open, just for a moment, in the realisation that it will be her only chance. David Lean's direction is atmospheric and sympathetic, and there are a number of choice smaller parts for the likes of Joyce Carey and Valentine Dyall. Perhaps the best of the Coward-Lean collaborations.
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