THE AMAZING MR. BLUNDEN (1972)
Article 2367 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 9-18-2007
Posting Date: 2-4-2008
Directed by Lionel Jeffries
Featuring Laurence Naismith, Lynne Frederick, Garry Miller
A widow and her three children become caretakers of a dilapidated mansion that is believed to be haunted. When two of her children encounter the ghosts of the mansion (also children), they are drawn into a plan to return to the past and save the children from the fire that killed them one hundred years ago.
In case you didn’t know it, I’m a sucker for stories about redemption, and that’s what this one is. In this case, the redemption is for Mr. Blunden, the solicitor who failed to save the children on the night of the fire, and whose ghost now arranges to rewrite the past with the help of children from the present. It’s an interesting combination of ghosts, Dickensian drama, and time travel, and it makes for an enticing, memorable, and sometimes unpredictable movie. Laurence Naismith does an excellent job in the title role, and the rest of the cast is fine as well. It’s interesting that both pairs of children get to be ghosts, depending on which time period they’re in; the movie starts in the present, goes back to the past, and returns to the present. Former sex symbol Diana Dors is unrecognizable as the ugly and sinister Mrs. Wickens, the main villainess of the piece. This one is highly recommended for anyone interested in seeing something different in a ghost story.