Baby Love (1968 film)

Baby Love is a 1969 British drama film directed by Alastair Reid and starring Diana Dors, Linda Hayden Keith Barron and Ann Lynn.[2][3]

Baby Love
Baby Love (film).jpg
Theatrical poster to Baby Love (1969)
Directed byAlastair Reid
Screenplay byAlastair Reid
Guido Coen
Michael Klinger
Based onBaby Love
by Tina Chad Christian
Produced byGuido Coen
StarringDiana Dors
Linda Hayden
Keith Barron
Ann Lynn
CinematographyDesmond Dickinson
Edited byJohn Glen
Music byMax Harris
Color processIn Color
Avton Film
Distributed byAVCO Embassy Pictures
Release date
  • 19 March 1969 (1969-03-19) (New York City)
  • 20 April 1969 (1969-04-20) (United Kingdom)
Running time
96 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box officeover $1,300,000[1]

The film tells the story of a 15 year-old schoolgirl who seduces her adoptive family after her mother committed suicide.

Reid went on to work in television, while Linda Hayden, who was only 15 at the time of filming, later appeared in sexploitation movies, including two of the entries in the Confessions film series, Confessions of a Window Cleaner (1974) and Confessions from a Holiday Camp (1977). The film features an uncredited appearance by Bruce Robinson, later to direct Withnail & I (1987).


Luci Thompson is a 15 year old school girl whose mother Liz, suffering from cancer, commits suicide. She goes to live with Robert Quayle, a childhood friend of Liz's, who is married to Amy and has a son, Nick. Luci’s arrival causes sexual and psychological tensions to surface, bringing the family close to destruction.



The film was based on the debut novel by Tina Chad Christian. Film rights were bought by producer Michael Klinger, who had just left Compton, a production company he had run with Tony Tenser. Baby Love would be his first movie as an independent producer.

The first director attached was Henri Safran. Linda Hayden was cast after an extensive talent search.[1] She was only fifteen years old and had to do her screen test topless.[4]

Safran was fired by Klinger and replaced by Alistair Reid. Linda Hayden said "Michael got rid of him because I don’t think he didn’t like what he saw, or something, but it was just that little bits of it were a bit tacky."[4]

Most of the finance came from Star Cinemas in the UK. Klinger sold the film to Joseph Levine of Anglo-Embassy for over $1 million.[1]

Hayden later said the film was "one of those projects that could so easily have gone wrong. It could have been a bit sleazy. Alastair made the film more grounded, so it wasn’t just done for sensationalism."[5]

Hayden recalled Diana Dors "hadn’t had a resurgence then; she was still yesterday’s news. And then suddenly, as the film came out, she had a resurgence. She was terrific. They did use her name quite a lot to hang the film on and it certainly paid off. She was quite a coup, and a smashing lady. I loved her. Her character casts a long shadow over the film. It needed somebody like that to do it."[5] The film helped revive her career.[6]


Box OfficeEdit

The film was the 11th most watched movie of the year in the UK in 1969.[7]

The film took over half a million dollars in both the North America and the UK, and over $300,000 in other territories.[1] receipts.

Howard Thompson of The New York Times gave the film a positive review, he praised the technical brilliance and wrote: "Ugly as it is in flavor and content, the picture is a genuine pint-sized spellbinder in construction, mood and mounting tension."[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e McKenna, A. T. (2012). "Independent Production and Industrial Tactics in Britain: Michael Klinger and Baby Love". Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television. Vol. 32 no. 4. pp. 611–631. doi:10.1080/01439685.2012.727339.
  2. ^ "Baby Love(1969)". Yahoo Movies. Archived from the original on 5 October 2013. Retrieved 31 May 2012.
  3. ^ Simon Sheridan, Keeping the British End Up: Four Decades of Saucy Cinema, Titan Books 2011 p 59-60
  4. ^ a b "Interview with Linda Hayden by Anthony McKenna and Andrew Spicer". Michael Klinger Papers. 14 February 2011.
  5. ^ a b Smith, Adrian (25 June 2020). "Interview with Baby Love's Linda Hayden". Network.
  6. ^ Vagg, Stephen (7 September 2020). "A Tale of Two Blondes: Diana Dors and Belinda Lee". Filmink.
  7. ^ "The World's Top Twenty Films." Sunday Times [London, England] 27 Sept. 1970: 27. The Sunday Times Digital Archive. accessed 5 Apr. 2014
  8. ^ Thompson, Howard (20 March 1969). "Chilling 'Baby Love' (Published 1969)". The New York Times.

External linksEdit