Joseph Losey (January 14, 1909 – June 22, 1984) directed some absorbing films (The Boy With Green Hair, The Go-Between, A Doll’s House, Galileo) and two masterpieces, The Servant and Accident.
After The Servant was rescued from a dusty shelf and became celebrated (at least, critically) around the world, Dirk Bogarde threw a party at the Connaught. In his book, Snakes and Ladders, he recalls the director Basil Dearden kneeling at Losey’s feet and asking him “…how could I make a film like this?…How should I even start?” Losey replied “Sure I know. Shall I tell you? Well; first of all you take your son away from Eton, sell all Melissa’s furs, get rid of the house and the pool, get rid of the cars, pack a couple of suitcases and move into a small flat and think things over. That’s the only way I know, Basil…no overheads; just the film.”
Pauline Kael, who was impressed by Accident without really liking it, said in her piece (reprinted in Kiss Kiss Bang Bang): “Losey is a master of sloth, and he can make the atmosphere of a scene thick with loathsome erotic overtones.”
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