|The Films of Petula Clark|
Released July 1949
Comedy-Musical-Romance - 85 minutes
JACK DENTON (has gone to collect his wayward grandfather, HARRY, from prison. As soon as he is free, however, Harry returns to his old ways and steals the car of famous actor MICHAEL FARLAINE, kidnapping his 16 year old daughter, SHEILA (Petula) in the process. Sheila, bored with her home life, proves to be a willing victim, especially after she meets Jack. She blackmails her captor into continuing the kidnapping and it takes considerable planning and a good deal of embarrassment before she is finally persuaded to return home.
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| A new British song, specially written by Jack Fishman and Peter Hart--composers of "Miranda"--will be featured in Gainsborough's Don't Ever Leave Me.
The song, a slow fox-trot entitled "It's Not for the Want of Trying" has a sparkling and attractive melody, whith clever lyrics to match.
In Don't Ever Leave Me the song is sung by sixteen-year-old PETULA CLARK who plays the part of a girl who is kidnapped. She sings it twice: once in a dance-hall sequence, when she croons with the band, and the second-time in her bath.
Composers Fishman and Hart are confident that "It's Not for the Want of Trying" will be just as successful as "Miranda."
I can see quite a busy future for Petula Clark, for in this new film she has her first grown-up part, and she makes the most of it.
As Sheila Farlaine, the bored young daughter of a famous actor, she is thrilled when kidnapped, in the most unprofessional way, by an old lag named Harry Denton who wants to prove to his friends that he is not a back number.
After abducting her he gets pangs of conscience but Sheila, delighted at the adventure, insists on him taking her to his grandson Jack's flat.
Meanwhile her father is making the most of the publicity that her disappearance is bringing him.
After a few hectic days Sheila is persuaded to go home, but instead of just arriving on the doorstep she crashes in on her father's big act, much to the delight of the audience.
Her father now acknowledges that she is no longer a child and agrees that she will be his next leading lad.
Suporting Petula in this good in parts comedy, are a list of well-known actors and actresses. Edward Rigby as the reluctant kidnapper is so kind that you must like him.
Hugh Sinclair as the father proves that every inch of him is an actor, while Jimmy Hanley is both convincing and charming. Brenda Bruce, Linden Travers and Barbara Murray are all equally good in their small parts.
Anthony Newley as Petula's boyfriend is a perfect pest to one and all. Watch out for the hairdresser, she really does deserve a mention.
Picturegoer - 8/20/49
Petite blue-eyed Petula Clark, who plays her first grown-up role in Gainsborough's Don't Ever Leave Me, is already an established star in Britain--although only sixteen years old.
SONG AND DANCE GIRL
Petula Clark sings again in Don't Ever Leave Me, this time a number that has been specially written for her entitled "It's Not for the Want of Trying." At the same time she makes her debut as a dancer--in a gay jitterbugging sequence which is one of the film's highlights.
OH! MY POOR FEET.
Sixteen-year-old PETULA CLARK, starring in Gainsborough's Don't Ever Leave Me, took part in an all-day jitterbug session during production of the film. The "dance-hall" was on Stage Three at Shepherd's Bush, and her dancing partner was JIMMY ("Hate-this-jive-stuff") HANLEY.
At the end of the day PETULA was exhausted. She explained: "I didn't mind the jitterbugging, but I had to wear high-heeled shoes--which I detest. Now my feet are killing me!"
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