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Black Sheep of Whitehall (1942)

Will Hay plays a Professor teaching at a correspondence school who discovers that a Nazi agent is trying to prevent a trade treaty being signed between England and South America. The agent ... See full summary »

Directors:

,

Writers:

(original story) (as Angus Macphail), (original story) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Bobby
Basil Sydney ...
Costello
Henry Hewitt ...
Prof. Davys
Felix Aylmer ...
Crabtree
Owen Reynolds ...
Harman
Frank Cellier ...
Innsbach
Joss Ambler ...
Sir John
Frank Allenby ...
Onslowe
...
Joyce
Margaret Halstan ...
Matron
Barbara Valerie ...
Sister Spooner
Leslie Mitchell ...
B.B.C. Interviewer
George Woodbridge ...
Male Nurse
George Merritt ...
Station Master
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Storyline

Will Hay plays a Professor teaching at a correspondence school who discovers that a Nazi agent is trying to prevent a trade treaty being signed between England and South America. The agent is posing as an economics expert seconded to the trade delegation. The professor must find the real economist and expose the agent. Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 June 1947 (Netherlands)  »

Also Known As:

Cerná ovce  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When the bath chair tips up at the end of the car case there are castor wheels on the bottom that are clearly visible. See more »

Quotes

Davis: [Asked to explain international commerce in a radio interview] Ah - well, the chief export from Portugal is - er - port, and the chief export of Brazil is - nuts. Well, now, the economic situation between port and nuts - that is to say between Portugal and Brazil, is that the Brazilians want to drink port with their nuts and the Portuguese want to eat nuts with their port; so the more the export of port from Portuguese ports which the Brazilian ports import - the greater the export of nuts which...
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In England there are many famous seats of learning .... OXFORD CAMBRIDGE ETON HARROW AND

HARROW Correspondence COLLEGE See more »

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User Reviews

 
Underrated
2 December 2007 | by (Derby, UK) – See all my reviews

This is one of Will Hay's overlooked gems – of course not up to his Gainborough standard it's continuously inventive with many hilarious patches. And John Mills excelled himself as his semi-comic sidekick in best Music Hall tradition.

Without going into too much detail: A Professor Davys is kidnapped by Nazi agents en route to the Ministry of International Commerce where he was to give the lowdown to the British government on how to screw 10 friendly South American governments with a multilateral economic agreement in the campaign to win WW2. The Nazis supply their own man to fool the Authorities. Hay, as seedy correspondence college Principal and Treasurer Professor Davis and Ministry clerk Mills get mixed up in it all when they discover the truth and the chase is on to out the Nazis. Believe it or not it would be quite an engrossing plot even without the comedy, and taken at breakneck speed. If remade today though cgi cartoonery, swearing, sex and violence would probably add 30 minutes on. Favourite bits: Hay's BBC radio interview with the despairing Leslie Mitchell; Mills in the hospital as an amnesiac; the nurse telling Hay (dressed as a nurse) she sees that Hay sticks to the old-fashioned undies and his surprising reply; the national anthems being played – although a missed opportunity to have Joss Ambler stand up in his turn; the slapstick chase with the Prof. in the bath-chair in tow. When the chair eventually loses its wheels the sound effects are relentlessly gorgeous!

With so many classics behind him and one classic still to make, Black Sheep can be compared unfavourably, but taken on its own is still a very funny British film made generations ago.


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