Upon returning home from an overnight stay out of town for work yesterday I decided to get a little nap in on the couch (considering the fact that I got very little sleep the night before). Seeing as how the wife was on the phone I changed the TV from whatever garbage show was on to something else for a little background noise, and I ended up on Turner Classic Movies (TCM). Though I didn’t really care what was on I checked the program info and found that I had just stepped in to the beginning of a British film, The Family Way. Though I didn’t catch every minute of the film I got the majority of it and it was….sweet, I suppose.

The film centers around young newlyweds, Arthur and Jenny, played by Hywel Bennett and a much older than I remember, and more beautiful than I remember, Haley Mills. If the name sounds familiar its because this is the same Haley Mills who starred in Disney’s The Parent Trap in 1961, as well as Disney’s That Darn Cat in 1965 and the film Pollyanna in 1960. The movie is an adaptation of a stage play titled, All in Good Time.

Hayley Mills The Family Way Posters and Photos 103955 ...

I have to take a minute to talk about how absolutely beautiful Haley Mills is in this film. An innocent beauty, I found myself quite taken with her, and it helps that we get to see her semi-nude (in an innocent kind of way) in the film with a very clear view of her bottom! She seemingly embodies the ideal “pre-feminist” woman in that she is thin with beautiful hair dressed in form flattering, but classy, clothing. I think most men would kill for a woman like Jenny in this film, but, I digress.

Upon getting married poor Arthur and Jenny find that they are unable to consummate their marriage, partially due to the fact that they live with Arthurs parents, who consist of an overbearing father and a doting mother. Later on we find that Arthur has some hang ups of his own that keep him from going through with the act (mostly mental) and when word gets out that they are having problems some local gossip causes them more issues. In the end, however, they succeed and the story wraps up on a happier note.

Despite its subject matter there are no “sex scenes” in the film and the nudity is limited to Arthurs brother walking in on Jenny while she is in the bath, in which she covers the front of her body with a towel, leaving the audience with a lovely view on the opposite side. I would classify the film as a drama and it has some pretty heavy sub-plots such as the one between Arthur and his father. I may have missed it during the times I was dozing, but I got the impression that Arthur reminds his father of his own father, and that has caused him to come down on Arthur rather harshly over the years. This is made even more prominent to him as Arthur matures, takes a wife and starts to try living a life on his own.

Though not really a comedy some of the interactions with the nosy neighborhood people were humorous, but its British comedy so (Sorry to all my British readers, but….British comedy…).

Its interesting to see how the concept of sex is displayed in the film. Despite debuting in 1967 the film handles the subject very discreetly. When the parents of the couple get together to bring the problem to light no one wants to just say “they haven’t had sex yet”, they keep using euphemisms and this leaves Arthurs dad out of the loop as he fails to understand until someone, finally, flat out states that, despite being a bride for some time already, Jenny is still a virgin. When Jenny and Arthur finally get away from the wedding party she still undresses, in the same room with her new husband, behind a screen, and comes out wearing a pleasant and pretty nightie. Modern times would see much more vulgar and straight-forward representation, but this more innocent take is refreshing and sweet.

SPOILER:

In the end, however, the two get the deed done after Jenny slaps Arthur when he accuses her of telling another man about their issue, after just having beat him up for his offer of, “doing a job for his wife that he can’t do”. Upon being slapped he calls her a bitch and is seemingly preparing to choke her when they fall to the bed and, in the heat of passionate anger, finally join as one.

Its been long said in red pill circles that passion generates desire and anger generates passion. If you want to generate passion in your marriage, as a husband, do your wife a favor and be an asshole every now and then. Not your typically roguish asshole, but a genuine asshole. Make her mad. Women love passion. Women are emotional creatures and when their emotions settle for too long they can get restless. The secret is that you, as her husband, need to be the one to rock the boat a little, hopefully before some other man does.

That being said I don’t know how well the ending would go over in modern cinema. No doubt Arthur would be mocked for his impotence and then called an abuser for his reaction to being slapped by an “empowered” Jenny.

Fortunately here, however, that doesn’t happen, and instead we get a nice ending that, really, on an emotional level, gives more focus on Arthur’s relationship with his father than his relationship with his wife.

Its interesting to note that the film was scored by Paul McCartney, and that Arthur’s father is played by veteran actor, John Mills, Haley Mills real life father.

Paul McCartney - The Family Way (1967, Vinyl) | Discogs

If you come across this film give it a watch. I think even some of the men out there would find it worth at least one viewing, if anything for the father son aspect.

Or, if anything, for the Haley Mills backside.

They just don’t make em’ like they used to, fellas.

The Boulting Brothers The Family Way Getting Blu-Ray Release