John Huston Michael Dempsey - Essay

Michael Dempsey

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

No historical data could explain the pervasive terror of that tiny fragment of the Hundred Years War that John Huston treats in his beautiful and under-rated A Walk With Love and Death….

Huston starts with the ordinary reality of this war—the bewildering way that enemies and friends become interchangeable—and works towards more universal overtones of doom and fear. His style is simple and low-keyed, but there is never any question of linkage between his medieval world and the modern zeitgeist. The lovers reject participation in the skirmishes, and society (embryonic as it is) in turn rejects them. The movie spurns conventional characterization for atmosphere and then spurns the...

(The entire section is 570 words.)