Temptation Harbour

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Temptation Harbour
Temptation Harbour (film).jpg
Temptation Harbour
Directed by Lance Comfort
Written by Rodney Ackland, Frederick Gotfurt
Produced by Victor Skutezky
Starring Robert Newton, Simone Simon, William Hartnell
Cinematography Otto Heller
Edited by Lito Carruthers
Music by Mischa Spoliansky
Distributed by Pathe Pictures
Release dates
27 February 1947 United Kingdom
27 March 1949 (USA)
Running time
102 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
Language English
Budget$1 million [1] or £133,174 [2]
Box office£132,235 [3]

Temptation Harbour is a 1947 British black and white crime/drama film, directed by Lance Comfort and starring Robert Newton, Simone Simon and William Hartnell. [4] It was adapted from Newhaven-Dieppe (also known as L'Homme de Londres or Affairs of Destiny), the 1933 novella by Georges Simenon.



A signalman on a quay sees a fight between two men. One of the men is deliberately pushed into the water and the signalman cannot save him, but he decides to keep his suitcase, which he later finds is full of banknotes with a value of £5000.



Although based on Simenon's novella, the plot was restructured and the location was changed from France to England. It was made at Welwyn Studios, with sets designed by the art director Cedric Dawe


Box office

The film was a commercial success. [5] As of 1 April 1950 the film earned distributor's gross receipts of £106,226 in the UK of which £72,026 went to the producer. [2]

Critical reception

The Monthly Film Bulletin wrote: "The acting in this film is good; Robert Newton as the signalman depicts all the temptations to which the flesh is heir; his moveable face shows the continual struggle between his conscience and his love for his daughter. Here is a weak man who is stupid as well as cunning. Margaret Barton as the daughter is exactly what an overworked child would be. Simone Simon as the "mermaid" is a clever actress, clever in more senses than one, and unpleasant. To people who know the "Newhaven-Dieppe" channel crossing there is a certain thrill in the Southern Railway scenes, the arrival of the ship, the cranes, the signal-box, the trains are all there beautifully and technically perfect. And the background music is good and descriptive." [6]

See also

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  1. "Sabu to Star in Rank's Big Tinter". Variety. 8 May 1946. p. 14.
  2. 1 2 Chapman, J. (2022). The Money Behind the Screen: A History of British Film Finance, 1945-1985. Edinburgh University Press p 355.
  3. Vincent Porter, 'The Robert Clark Account', Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, Vol 20 No 4, 2000 p485
  4. "Temptation Harbour". British Film Institute Collections Search. Retrieved 25 December 2023.
  5. Harper, Sue; Porter, Vincent (2003). British Cinema of The 1950s The Decline of Deference. Oxford University Press USA. p. 76.
  6. "Temptation Harbour". The Monthly Film Bulletin . 14 (157): 47. 1 January 1947 via ProQuest.