7.5/10
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48 user 23 critic

Room at the Top (1959)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 22 January 1959 (UK)
Trailer
2:39 | Trailer
An ambitious young accountant plots to wed a wealthy factory owner's daughter, despite falling in love with a married older woman.

Director:

Jack Clayton

Writers:

Neil Paterson (screenplay), John Braine (adapted from the novel by)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Simone Signoret ... Alice Aisgill
Laurence Harvey ... Joe Lampton
Heather Sears ... Susan Brown
Donald Wolfit ... Mr. Brown
Donald Houston ... Charles Soames
Hermione Baddeley ... Elspeth
Allan Cuthbertson ... George Aisgill
Raymond Huntley ... Mr. Hoylake
John Westbrook ... Jack Wales
Ambrosine Phillpotts ... Mrs. Brown
Richard Pasco ... Teddy
Beatrice Varley Beatrice Varley ... Aunt
Delena Kidd Delena Kidd ... Eva
Ian Hendry ... Cyril
April Olrich April Olrich ... Mavis
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Storyline

The English factory town is dreary but Joe Lampton has landed a job with a future. To have something to do at night he joins a theatrical group. His boss's daughter Susan is playing ingenue roles on stage and in real life. She is attracted to Joe and Joe thinks about how much faster he will get ahead if he is the boss's son-in-law. This plan is complicated by his strong desire to be with an older woman who also belongs to the theatrical group. She is French and unhappily married. Joe believes he can get away with seeing both women. Written by Dale O'Connor <daleoc@interaccess,com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Motion Picture So Frankly Physical...So Boldly Unashamed...We Recommend It to Adult Audiences Only! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 January 1959 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Room at the Top See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

GBP280,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Romulus Films, Remus See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The only film to be nominated for Best Actor and Actress Oscars that year. See more »

Goofs

It should be noted that the book was first published in 1957 in the UK. It was meant to depict the post-war class, social and economic structures still in place across Britain. In the novel the narrator is looking back at events that happened a decade earlier. See more »

Quotes

Mr. Brown: Don't worry about the way the world's run, lad. Enjoy it while you're young.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Dick Van Dyke Show: The Ghost of A. Chantz (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

The Wedding March
(uncredited)
Music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Arranged by Lambert Williamson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A landmark film
11 February 2008 | by barryrdSee all my reviews

I recently viewed this film from 1959 and was totally riveted to it. It is a timeless love story set in post-war Britain with the incomparable Simone Signoret and Laurence Harvey at the centre of the storm. The background highlights the struggle between class and ambition in 1950's Britain. Laurence Harvey plays Joe Lampton, the "angry young man" who is motivated to make something of himself in a world that he is not comfortable with. Harvey portrays a new kid on the block who has taken a job at city hall, where he works with other young men like himself. He and his buddies remind us of randy high school students discovering the world and women all at once.

While Joe shows all the aptitudes necessary for advancement, he is a man of principle who inherits the hostility of the working class that flares up when provoked by snide remarks about where he came from. He has trouble playing the game but no trouble attracting the attention of the ladies. At first attracted to the daughter of a local tycoon, he knows that he is an outsider and seeks the advice and friendship of an older woman - the genuine and magnetic Signoret, who plays the lovelorn wife of a local businessman and philanderer. Over time, he falls deeply in love with the older woman and the time they spend alone provides some of the most compelling scenes you are likely to find in the cinema of the 1950's. After successfully wooing her, he runs headlong into the realities of life, leading to a gut-wrenching climax, which you won't forget.


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