Capturing Love

Despite the astronomical success of The Hayseed Chronicles after his death, for perennial nearly man Arthur Hayman it seemed defeat was fated to be the only thing he ever tasted. Hayman was a great popularist. Everything he did during his lifetime, be it his scripts, films or books, was made for the masses, but sadly, only enjoyed by the privileged few. It still troubles me that even his great magnum opi was dismissingly regarded in some obituaries as ‘obscure’.



I have been looking into his one foray as a director during the boom of the British Film Industry in the late 1940s, with the feature Love’s Capture (or more often, the misnomer, Love’s Captive). Somehow Gainsborough Studios managed to convince Phyllis Calvert (pictured) to star in this tale of the adulterous goings on in pre-war village life. 


Having enjoyed Mary Webb’s now long out of print book of the same name, I’ve always been curious of how Hayman would have brought the story to life on the screen. All prints of the film have been lost to time and only a few bitter reviews remain, the brevity and curtness of which suggest few tears but my own will be shed over its quiet dissolution from history.

If anyone was lucky enough to have seen the original run in 1950, when it played a muted second fiddle to the more successful Gone to Earth, please get in touch.

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2 Responses to “Capturing Love”

  1. Had no idea Arthur had been a film maker before he was an author. Shows how much I know… Such a shame all the prints have been lost, would have been fascinating to see if you could catch any ‘echoes’ of Hayseed or Toppit.

  2. […] the quintessentially BBCish Mr Lewis discusses and (somewhat) favourably reviews Arthur Hayman’s Love’s Capture, a film he describes as a ‘challenging exploration of contemporary British […]

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