This repackaged version of John Schlesinger's seminal masterpiece A Kind of Loving, is still sadly not the definitive restoration so sorely needed for this the very finest of British films. The print appears to be the same as that previously released by Momentum, and comes as a very grainy version with much of the original detail lost. As a result, Schlesinger's masterful attention to detail and the exquisite beauty of Denys N. Coop's black & white photography is still compromised in this edition. Additionally, this may also be a slightly shorter version than the previous release. Let's hope the likes of US restorer Criterion might get hold of it, and do what they did for their Region 1 Billy Liar double disc restoration, which is one of the best DVD restoration and extras packages on the market.
That said, very little can spike the director's genius and the utterly perfect script from legends Keith Waterhouse & Willis Hall. Of all the northern film dramas of the period, A Kind of Loving is the one that tells it how it really was. The awkward and touching innocence of Alan Bates' Vic and June Ritchie's Brenda, was socially par for the course in pre Beatles Britain - which was still in a kind of frozen post war shock.
This is a film that was rightfully shot in black & white, and in that monochrome spirit, Schlesinger so skilfully reminds us that cold rainy streets and packed buses with steamed up windows can still be the stuff of romance. Vic's tender joy at having hooked Brenda into a date on Saturday night is truly palpable, and identifies in all of us that special romantic rush that blots out all our worldly worries.
A Kind of Loving is a seminal British classic that deserves the full uncut restoration treatment with supporting documentaries and commentaries. Studio Canal please take note for the forthcoming Blu-Ray version which I'm sure will soon be on the cards.