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Directed by Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger

United Kingdom 1946 104 mins.

“Set in a gorgeously photographed Technicolor England and a monochrome heaven, A Matter of Life and Death took the imaginative daring of jointly credited writer-producer-directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger to new heights. David Niven plays a British airman who survives a plane crash and falls in love with an American radio operator (Kim Hunter), only to be summoned to the afterlife by a heavenly ‘Conductor’ (Marius Goring). But is heaven just a hallucination brought on by brain injury? Powell and Pressburger layer breathtaking visual tricks on top of this whimsical premise, such as a celebrated point-of-view shot in which our hero’s eyelid closes over the camera lens. The film also works as a sly satire on Anglo-American relations at the end of WWII. This was the first feature photographed by the great cinematographer Jack Cardiff, previously camera operator for their The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943).”—British Film Institute. New digital restoration.

Genres: Comedy, Drama