CONSTANCE

 (Bruce Morrison, New Zealand, 1984) 100 minutes

CONSTANCE

Director: Bruce Morrison
Producer: Larry Parr
Screenplay: Jonathan Hardy
Photography: Kevin Hayward
Editor: Philip Howe
Music: John Charles, Dave Fraser
Donogh Rees (Constance Elsworthy)
Hester Joyce (Noeline)
Dana Purkis (Young Constance)
Martin Vaughan (Alexander Elsworthy)
Lee Grant (Mrs. Barr)
Graham Harvey (Errol Barr)
Miranda Pritchard (Jenny West)
Beryl Te Wiata (Mrs. Mair (Yevgenia))

Reviews and notes

Like a 40s melodrama, CONSTANCE enters a world where aspirations clash with reality to produce tragedy. The reality in question is the life of beautiful and vivacious Constance Ellsworthy, an Auckland teacher with a secure and comfortable future ahead of her. But Constance, fuelled by Hollywood images, dreams of romance, wealth and fame and begins to act her life like a heroine from the silver screen. It is a disastrous decision!

Bruce Morrison's first feature is an enthralling story of the ambitions of an intelligent woman who gets caught in the cinematic myth of femininity. Donogh Rees gives a sensitive performance in the title role, with an ability to suggest the inner desires behind her erratic behaviour. CONSTANCE probes an issue central for women today: the way that women's self-identity, culled from the media, conflicts with the limited horizons society offers them and results in a lack of confidence. Constance chooses to fight for her dream and wins in the only way open to her.
-Sally Hibbin, London Film Festival, 1984

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