The Spanish Gardener

The Spanish GardenerDespite the year in which this movie is made – it is worth seeing nowadays, and I am glad that I could dig it out of my collection. The Spanish Gardener is a British movie, and as such, it carries the atmosphere typical for the movies produced in the country. In Spain, the British consul moves into the country with his son soon after the boy`s mother left them.
The father had some troubles at work, and the need to relocate is making him feel miserable. Yet, he hopes that life in the country will be beneficial for his son’s health, who looks a bit lurid in the first scenes of the movie.
The garden in the villa they moved into needs some attention, and a local gardener is hired. Soon he is befriended by the boy. Their friendship grows strong – which is not surprising because, until that moment, the boy has been denied to play with other kids or hang out with friends because of his father’s opinion that his son is too delicate. Now the boy discovers a whole new word – finally, he could louse the suits and ties he is wearing and play as any kid his age would.
The gardener is a great mentor to the kid showing him how to do basic stuff in the garden, fish …etc. As John Frame mentioned in his review published on the movie page at IMDB, the gardener teaches the boy: ” …to enjoy the beauty of nature and the joy of life itself.”
The Spanish Gardener scene
Jon Whiteley gets a lesson from Dirk Bogarde in The Spanish Gardener.
The diplomat becomes jealous of his son’s close relationship with their Spanish gardener. He loves his child very much – and feels bad that the boy prefers to spend his time with their employee instead of with his father. Torn by the jealousy, he contrives to frame the man and have him sent off to jail, but the gardener escapes.
The movie’s scenes are very colourful, surprising for a movie shoot before that many years. The landscapes shown are gorgeous, and everyone who has ever been to Spain will appreciate them. I was not fond of the soundtrack, although most professional reviewers regard it as very good.

Overall The Spanish Gardener is a good movie that focuses on friendship, mentoring and jealously. I am hesitating to give a general recommendation for this movie – because it is filmed in a way which would be appealing mostly for people who have a deeper interest in the cinema as an art form.

Spanish Gardener (1956) Philip Leacock

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