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The Titfield Thunderbolt (1953)

 -  Comedy  -  20 October 1953 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 1,440 users  
Reviews: 40 user | 16 critic

Volunteers take over their local passenger train service (against bus company resistance) when the government announces its closure.

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(original screenplay)
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Title: The Titfield Thunderbolt (1953)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Valentine
George Relph ...
Weech
Naunton Wayne ...
Blakeworth
John Gregson ...
Gordon
Godfrey Tearle ...
The Bishop
...
Dan
Gabrielle Brune ...
Joan
Sidney James ...
Hawkins
Reginald Beckwith ...
Coggett
Edie Martin ...
Emily
Michael Trubshawe ...
Ruddock
...
Vernon Crump (as Jack McGowran)
Ewan Roberts ...
Alec Pearce
Herbert C. Walton ...
Seth
John Rudling ...
Clegg
Edit

Storyline

The residents of a small English village are about to lose their ancient railroad. They decide to rescue it by running it themselves, in competition with the local bus company. Written by Blair Stannard <stannard@sonetis.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Comedy Hit of the Year! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 October 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Blixten från Titfield  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)| (Gaumont Kalee Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A wooden replica of "Lion" was made for the scene where "Thunderbolt" is removed from the museum. See more »

Goofs

When the water crane has been sabotaged and the passengers have brought water to the engine, Mr. Valentine can be seen coming back to the train as the Squire gets back in the guard's van. In the next shot he is seen gathering the bottles he saved *before* coming back to the train. See more »

Quotes

Sam Weech: We want the Titfield Thunderbolt.
George Blakeworth: Out of the museum?
Sam Weech: Yes, yes, she'll run. She's as good as she ever was. I'll stake my living on it!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Unforgettable Sid James (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

The Eton Boating Song
(uncredited)
Music by Algernon Drummond
Lyrics by William Johnson
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Thumbs up for the 'Thunderbolt'
30 November 2003 | by (Oxford, England) – See all my reviews

For my money this is the best and funniest of all the 'Ealing Comedies', it is so quintessentially post war British that it could not have been made by any other than Ealing Studios. The plot is simple - British Railways decide to close a local branch line and a group of villagers led by the local squire and vicar battle government red tape and the local bus company to run their own railway, eventually using an ancient locomotive (Thunderbolt) from the museum to pull their train. The character acting is superb as is the beautifully photographed scenery, but what makes this film stand by itself is that it does not rely on sex and violence (well only hammed up - such as the unforgettable joust between a railway locomotive and Sid James's steam roller)and no bad language. It is a reminder of a long departed much simpler and more idealistic age where its message of right would eventually overcome wrong, was almost believable. It is a very gentle film, an innocent film, and despite its age still manages to deliver a feel good factor of 10/10.


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