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The Man in the White Suit (1951)

 -  Comedy | Sci-Fi | Drama  -  April 1952 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 5,592 users  
Reviews: 63 user | 46 critic

An altruistic chemist invents a fabric that resists wear and stain as boon to humanity but both capital and labor realize it must be suppressed for economic reasons.

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(play), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: The Man in the White Suit (1951)

The Man in the White Suit (1951) on IMDb 7.4/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sidney Stratton
...
Daphne Birnley
Cecil Parker ...
Alan Birnley
...
Michael Corland
...
Sir John Kierlaw
Howard Marion-Crawford ...
Cranford (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Henry Mollison ...
Hoskins
Vida Hope ...
Bertha
Patric Doonan ...
Frank
Duncan Lamont ...
Harry
Harold Goodwin ...
Wilkins
Colin Gordon ...
Hill
Joan Harben ...
Miss Johnson
Arthur Howard ...
Roberts
Roddy Hughes ...
Green
Edit

Storyline

Sidney Stratton, a humble inventor, develops a fabric which never gets dirty or wears out. This would seem to be a boon for mankind, but the established garment manufacturers don't see it that way; they try to suppress it. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Should they let him play...or should they put him away? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

April 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

L'homme au complet blanc  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,874 (USA) (16 November 2012)

Gross:

$8,265 (USA) (25 January 2013)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System) (Gaumont-Kalee)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The strange noises made by the laboratory apparatus were created by uncredited sound editor Mary Habberfield and produced for the sound track by a tuba and a bassoon. See more »

Goofs

When Mr. Harrison is called by a woman because he is wanted by Mr. Corland, he is blowing into a glass vial on a side counter which was not there in the previous shot. See more »

Quotes

Sir John Kierlaw: Now. Some fool has invented an indestructible cloth. Where is he? How much does he want?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Classic Ealing Gem
2 August 2004 | by (Beverley Hills, England) – See all my reviews

The Man in the White Suit is one of those delightful comedies that Ealing studies made so well in the 40's and 50's. The plot of this one follows a man that invents a cloth that neither gets dirty nor breaks. Of course, this is a huge breakthrough in the world of textiles. However, things are not that simple as the cloth will threaten the way of life of many people, including cloth manufacturers, the cloth mill's workforces, and even an old lady that does her washing every week. The Man in the White Suit is a film about scientific advances, and the way that they don't always help; as the old woman says at one point in the movie, "Why cant you scientists just leave things alone?"

Like a lot Ealing comedies, this one stars Sir Alec Guinness. Alec Guinness is a fantastic actor; he has the ability to light up the screen with his presence (and he does in this film, literally), but he also manages to portray his characters in a down to earth and believable way. He is suitably creepy in this film, and he captures just the right atmosphere for his character; an intelligent and ambitious, but slightly naive scientist. Along with Guinness, The Man in the White Suit also features Joan Greenwood, the deep voiced actress that co-starred with Guinness in the simply divine "Kind Hearts and Coronets" and Michael Gough, a man that would go on to get himself the role of Alfred in the Batman films. The acting in the film isn't always great, but it is always decent, and it's fits with the film.

The Man in the White Suit is an intelligent, thought-provoking and witty comedy with a moral. The comedy isn't always obvious, and it doesn't always work, but the film is not meant to be a film that provokes belly laughs, so that is forgivable. I recommend this movie, basically, to anyone that is a fan of movies.


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