Joan Webster (Wendy Hiller), a most stubborn woman; and her bemused admirer Torquil (Roger Livesey)
I know where I’m goin’/and I know who’s goin’ with me/
I know who I love/But the dear knows who I’ll marry. – Scottish folksong
Ever since childhood, Joan Webster has known exactly what she wants from life and how to get it. Her latest objective involves marriage to a wealthy British industrialist. The wedding is to take place on the Isle of Kiloran, off the west coast of Scotland. Unfortunately, Joan only gets as far as the Isle of Mull before being detained by bad weather.
While waiting for the wind and rain to die down, Joan gets to know some of the more unusual inhabitants of Mull: Catriona, a shaggy-haired huntress who wanders around the island with a pack of deer hounds, and Colonel Barnstaple, a rather inept falconer. And oh yes, there’s Torquil (Roger Livesey), a kilted fellow with gentle eyes and an easy smile, who cannot stop looking at Joan from the moment she steps off the boat.
It’s pretty obvious from the beginning of this lovely romantic comedy what will happen to Joan in the end. The fun is in watching her helplessly trying to resist the charm and attraction of Mull, its people….and of course, Torquil.
Note: Look for ’60’s/’70’s singing star Petula Clark, who plays the bespectacled child of a rich family in this film.
You can download a rental copy of I Know Where I’m Going by clicking onto the following link:
Directors Emeric Pressburger and Michael Powell were known for their collaboration on a series of 1940’s and ’50’s British films which ranged from gentle comedy (I Know Where I’m Going) to fantasy (1946’s A Matter of Life and Death, 1948’s The Red Shoes) to exotic drama (1947’s Black Narcissus). A Powell/Pressburger production always featured great art design and cinematography. The ballet film The Red Shoes is perhaps the best example of this duo’s artistry in visual presentation. The exquisite ballet sequence in the middle of the film was the primary reason that Red Shoes won the Academy Award for Best Production Design and Best Original Music Score.
Pluses: Gorgeous shots of the Island of Mull (yes, there is such a place), delightful performances from those playing the inhabitants of Mull, good romantic chemistry between lead actors Hiller and Livesey. Opening credits humorously set up the storyline.
Minus: I really cannot think of any. If you’re looking for big drama or huge laughs, don’t see this picture. If you’re looking for a gentle love story with some enjoyable supporting performances, definitely see this picture.
Cast: Wendy Hiller, Roger Livesey, Pamela Brown, Finlay Currie, George Carney, Nancy Price, Catherine Lacey, Captain C.W.R. Knight, Petula Clark.
Director(s): Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Unrated. (I should warn PETA sympathizers that there’s a brief scene where a trained falcon picks away at a dead rabbit. They do hunt in Scotland.)
Black and white
Length: 93 minutes