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A Canterbury Tale (1944)

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Reviews: 54 user | 33 critic

A 'Land Girl', an American GI, and a British soldier find themselves together in a small Kent town on the road to Canterbury. The town is being plagued by a mysterious "glue-man", who pours... See full summary »

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Title: A Canterbury Tale (1944)

A Canterbury Tale (1944) on IMDb 7.7/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Eric Portman ...
Thomas Colpeper, JP
Sheila Sim ...
Alison Smith
...
Peter Gibbs
John Sweet ...
Bob Johnson (as Sergt. John Sweet U.S. Army)
...
Narrator (non-US versions) / Seven-Sisters Soldier / Village Idiot
Charles Hawtrey ...
Thomas Duckett
Hay Petrie ...
Woodcock
George Merritt ...
Ned Horton
Edward Rigby ...
Jim Horton
Freda Jackson ...
Prudence Honeywood
Betty Jardine ...
Fee Baker
Eliot Makeham ...
Organist
Harvey Golden ...
Sergt. Roczinsky
Leonard Smith ...
Leslie
James Tamsitt ...
Terry
Edit

Storyline

A 'Land Girl', an American GI, and a British soldier find themselves together in a small Kent town on the road to Canterbury. The town is being plagued by a mysterious "glue-man", who pours glue on the hair of girls dating soldiers after dark. The three attempt to track him down, and begin to have suspicions of the local magistrate, an eccentric figure with a strange, mystical vision of the history of England in general and Canterbury in particular. Written by David Levene <D.S.Levene@durham.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

glue | village | soldier | magistrate | england | See more »

Taglines:

Four modern pilgrims in a story of today - yet away from war.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Mystery | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 January 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Canterbury mesék  »

Box Office

Budget:

$650,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Among the various books and pictures seen in Colpepper's sitting room is a photograph of the Shetland Island of Foula, the location of director Michael Powell's first acclaimed feature film The Edge of the World (1937). See more »

Quotes

Prudence Honeywood: That's your room. You won't get much of a view I'm afraid.
Alison Smith: You should have seen the view from my room in London.
Prudence Honeywood: Was it a long street with every house a different sort of sadness in it?
Alison Smith: It was a long row of back gardens, and the tall, sad houses were all the same.
Prudence Honeywood: Ghastly in winter.
Alison Smith: Airless in summer. You seem to know them.
Prudence Honeywood: The only man who ever asked me to marry him wanted me to live in a house like that. I'm still a maid.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Arena: A Pretty British Affair (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

I See You Everywhere
(uncredited)
Written by Allan Gray, Stan Bowsher, and Walter Ridley
Heard in the background during Johnson and Gibbs's scene in the lobby of the Hand of Glory
See more »

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User Reviews

A deep & entertaining study
14 October 1999 | by (New Delhi, India) – See all my reviews

This is a multilayered, erudite, passionate exploration of England's national character. The route Powell and Pressburger take for this rather difficult task is to follow John Bunyan's 'Pilgrim's Progress'. During the second war a group of disparate people are thrown together one night at a deserted railway platform in Kent. Using a plot device of a mysterious, though harmless, assailant who preys upon women, P & P examines English country life, the Englishman's love for nature, the idisyncracies, the distrust of foreigners, the 'pubbing', the resilience, the faith in institutions (the church, the gentry), etc.

The scope of the movie is amazing, and in 2 hours it covers enormous ground. The entire thing is so skillfully and assuredly done that in spite of the absence of any stars and (almost) of a story, and the fact that John Bull is never my companion of choice in any desert island, I was riveted to this movie. Besides the acting, this effect was achieved also by Alfred Junge's brilliant art direction (I couldn't believe the Canterbury church was just a set) and William Hillier's black and white photography. Two scenes stand out - a bird 'turning into' an airplane signifying time going on ahead by a few centuries, and an armoured car breaking through bushes and undergrowth (a very 'Predator'-ish shot).

This is a must see.


66 of 70 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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