Thursday, June 01, 2006
An updated Cinderella, with poor blind Selina (ably and adorably portrayed by Elizabeth Hartman) in the role of drudgery maid. Shelly Winters is her wretched whore of a mother. Playing the Prince is Mr. Poitier as Gordon, who helps Selina in the park one day and becomes her friend, and eventually a bit more than that. Poitier's presence prevents the absolute collapse of A Patch of Blue into after-school special treacle, but the film must be appreciated in the context of its time. Race and class and tolerance are the themes of course, and if this one doesn't move you despite occasional moral heavy-handedness, you're a cold-hearted bastard. I added this to my Netflix queue after catching the last ten seconds on TCM and thinking the black-and-white cinematography lovely. A good find.