Tony Richardson

A Taste of Honey

A Taste of Honey

The revolutionary British New Wave films of the early 1960s were celebrated for their uncompromising depictions of working-class lives and relations between the sexes. Directed by Tony Richardson, a leading light of that movement, and based on one of the most controversial plays of its time, A Taste of Honey features Rita Tushingham in her star-making debut role as a disaffected teenager finding her way amid the economic desperation of industrial Manchester, and despite her absent, self-absorbed mother. With its unapologetic identification with social outcasts and its sensitive, modern approach to matters of sexuality and race, Richardson’s classic is a still startling benchmark work of realism.

Film Info

  • Tony Richardson
  • United Kingdom
  • 1961
  • 100 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.66:1
  • English
  • Spine #829

Special Features

  • New, restored, 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interviews with actors Rita Tushingham and Murray Melvin
  • Audio interview with director and coscreenwriter Tony Richardson from the 1962 Cannes Film Festival
  • Excerpt from a 1960 television interview with A Taste of Honey playwright Shelagh Delaney
  • Interview from 1998 with cinematographer Walter Lassally
  • Remaking British Theater: Joan Littlewood and “A Taste of Honey,” a new piece about the film’s stage origins, featuring an interview with theater scholar Kate Dorney
  • Momma Don’t Allow (1956), a Free Cinema short film by Richardson, shot by Lassally
  • PLUS: An essay by film scholar Colin MacCabe
    New cover by Jon Gray

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New, restored, 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interviews with actors Rita Tushingham and Murray Melvin
  • Audio interview with director and coscreenwriter Tony Richardson from the 1962 Cannes Film Festival
  • Excerpt from a 1960 television interview with A Taste of Honey playwright Shelagh Delaney
  • Interview from 1998 with cinematographer Walter Lassally
  • Remaking British Theater: Joan Littlewood and “A Taste of Honey,” a new piece about the film’s stage origins, featuring an interview with theater scholar Kate Dorney
  • Momma Don’t Allow (1956), a Free Cinema short film by Richardson, shot by Lassally
  • PLUS: An essay by film scholar Colin MacCabe
    New cover by Jon Gray
A Taste of Honey
Cast
Rita Tushingham
Jo
Dora Bryan
Helen
Paul Danquah
Jimmy
Murray Melvin
Geoffrey
Robert Stephens
Peter
Credits
Director
Tony Richardson
Produced by
Tony Richardson
Screenplay by
Shelagh Delaney
Screenplay by
Tony Richardson
Adapted from the play by
Shelagh Delaney
Music by
John Addison
Cinematography by
Walter Lassally
Film editing by
Anthony Gibbs
Art direction by
Ralph W. Brinton

From The Current

A Taste of Honey: Northern Accents
A Taste of Honey: Northern Accents

Tony Richardson’s era-defining exploration of sexuality, race, and working-class life brought a uniquely female perspective to England’s Free Cinema movement.

By Colin MacCabe

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10 Things I Learned: A Taste of Honey
10 Things I Learned: A Taste of Honey

6. The influence of A Taste of Honey can be felt in the pop music of the period, including the work of the Beatles, Herb Alpert, and Barbra Streisand, all of whom covered the title song composed for the Broadway version.

A Kitchen-Sink Classic in London

Repertory Picks

A Kitchen-Sink Classic in London

A daring portrayal of race, class, and sexuality, Tony Richardson’s A Taste of Honey plays at the British Film Institute in a monthlong tribute to Woodfall Films, one of the pioneers of British social realism.

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Morrissey’s Taste for Shelagh Delaney
Morrissey’s Taste for Shelagh Delaney

“I’ve never made any secret of the fact that at least 50 percent of my reason for writing can be blamed on Shelagh Delaney,” the singer-songwriter once said. Gathered here are some of his most prominent references to the English playwright’s

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