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The History of Mr. Polly (1949)

6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 383 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 7 critic

Quiet and somewhat direction-less, Alfred Polly uses the money he inherits from his father to marry and to set up shop in a small town. His heart is in neither of these enterprises and he ... See full summary »

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(as Anthony Pélissier)

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(by), (adapted for the screen by) (as Anthony Pélissier)
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Title: The History of Mr. Polly (1949)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Betty Ann Davies ...
Megs Jenkins ...
...
Gladys Henson ...
Diana Churchill ...
Shelagh Fraser ...
Edward Chapman ...
Dandy Nichols ...
...
...
Laurence Baskcomb ...
Edie Martin ...
Moore Marriott ...
David Horne ...
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Storyline

Quiet and somewhat direction-less, Alfred Polly uses the money he inherits from his father to marry and to set up shop in a small town. His heart is in neither of these enterprises and he eventually resorts to desperate measures to break free. His random wanderings in the countryside lead him to a new opportunity that just might be what he's been looking for all along. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

27 April 1950 (Australia)  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An earlier Hollywood version starring Charles Laughton was in production but was cancelled following the outbreak of the Second World War. See more »

Quotes

The Innkeeper: I suppose you're all right. You've got a sort of half respectable look about you. I suppose you haven't done anything?
Alfred Polly: Bit of arson.
The Innkeeper: So long as you haven't the habit.
Alfred Polly: My first time, m'am, and my last.
See more »

Connections

Version of The History of Mr Polly (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
a charming but simple tale saved by the brilliant music
25 September 2006 | by (London, UK) – See all my reviews

HG Wells was one of the most successful novelists of the early 20th century, particularly famous for his science fiction. But earlier his tales of life among the ordinary people won him great success and eventually a wide reputation as a thinker and commentator as well as a writer. He wrote from personal experience - his mother was a domestic servant in a great house called Uppark, now one of the showplace of the National Trust. Mr Polly was a typical Wells characters - easy-going, unambitious, an innocent in a wicked world. John MIlls, one of the best-loved of British actors, captures perfectly the character of this harmless, well-meaning man, destined to be pushed hither and thither by a variety of females. But the film lack a strong story line and is often aimless and boring. THere are some hilarious scenes - the funeral of his father, which was more like a wedding party than a wake, with young women circling the newly rich innocent like sharks round a seal. Best of all was the scene where Mr Polly tries his hand at punting, struggling with his passenger and throwing them both in to the water. The music here was brilliantly written for the wind of the orchestra and played by a team of virtuosos with an outstanding clarinettist - who were they? The composer William Alwyn was probably the most prolific film composer of his or any generation. His work here saved the film from well-meant but earnest tedium. There should be a celebration of Alwyn's contribution to the art of film.


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