The opening sequences include the focus on some wall pictures that convey a former erotic function for the palace; a euphemism for a windswept compound on the shelf of a mountain. Ian Bannan, a Scottish actor, once referred to Deborah Kerr as "that lassie frae Helensburgh"; a posh town near Glasgow. Her performance is something to behold, particularly in the confines of a nun's habit. Consequently, the acting is often like in the silent movies; sudden head movement and expressive eyes, captured in the camera. Jean Simmons (an English rose in normal life) is a revelation in her role. It's as if the House of Women, as the palace was once known, is affecting some of the nuns. The photography and the colour are stunning (Jack Cardiff). Mr Dean (David Farrar) is a strong, masculine presence. He is uncouth at times yet strangely sympathetic to the nuns' plight. There is love; both unrequited (the worst kind) and acknowledged, with such gentleness and from a surprising source. It's a stunning film!
Author of `e-Love'.