I admit to being somewhat of an Anglophile. I was prepared to like A Canterbury Tale as delivered by the crisply produced Criterion DVD. But I admit to being especially charmed and captivated by this quirky and beautifully produced slice of wartime England from 1944.
The Archers skillfully intertwine historical references to Chaucer with a 1940’s view of a picturesque rural wartime England complete with occasional views of barrage balloons, aircraft contrails, and bombed out buildings.
The film’s denouement in the Canterbury Cathedral is simultaneously patriotic, emotionally charged, bittersweet, and lovely to hear and look at. Plus — and this I found to be an especially interesting component — an American is a key character and is presented in a positive light!
How times have changed!