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Out of the Clouds (1955)

 -  Drama  -  2 May 1955 (Sweden)
6.0
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 78 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 2 critic

A busy day at London Airport. Follow the lives and loves of the crew and passengers.

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Writers:

(adapted from "The Springboard"), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anthony Steel ...
Gus Randall
...
Nick Millbourne
David Knight ...
Bill Steiner
Margo Lorenz ...
Leah Rosch
...
Captain Brent
...
Penny Henson
Isabel Dean ...
Mrs Malcolm
Gordon Harker ...
The Taxi Driver
...
Customs Officer
Michael Howard ...
Purvis
Marie Lohr ...
Rich Woman
Esma Cannon ...
Her Companion
...
The Indian
...
Jean Osmond
Sidney James ...
The Gambler
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Storyline

A busy day at London Airport. Follow the lives and loves of the crew and passengers.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 May 1955 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

O Amor Chegou de AviĆ£o  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Eastman Colour)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Arf of Arf and Arf
(uncredited)
Written and Arranged by Una Bart
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User Reviews

Heathrow cleared for take-off
27 January 2005 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

After Ealing's 'Dead of Night', ensemble films-- sets of short stories linked by theme- caught on in Britain. And after 'Train of Events' (1949), Relph and Dearden had another bash with this pre-'Airport' (and pre-'Airplane!') compendium of tears, love and laughter set at London's Heathrow Airport. Michael Balcon eased the purse strings to permit shooting in Eastmancolour-- all those blue skies and silver speed birds-- but the cast, apart from Lorenz and the British-based American David Knight, is British Commonwealth (Robert Beattie, a Canadian, worked mainly over here) and the low-key tone is Anglo too.

'Out of the Clouds' can be seen as a continuation of the post-war 'victory against the odds' genre: uniforms, stiff upper lips, quasi-military routines with room for the odd romance or shared confidence between male pilots (officers) and subservient female stewardesses. During a sticky landing, the airport firemen standing by are shot from heroic low angles as if by Humphrey Jennings. Anthony Steel as a philandering, smuggling cockpit jockey is like the statutory bad apple in a POW camp.

But wartime memories feed into the film's inspiration in a less obvious manner. It reflects a brief surge of optimism about Britain leading the world in civil aviation.

Heathrow, though it looks like a desert here, has been operating for almost ten years. It is on its way to becoming the busiest crossroads of air travel, as well as the greatest noise pollution disaster in Europe. The central area already has its control tower and first purpose-built terminal-- a far cry from the tent city which hastily arose in 1945 after a cabal of civil servants and airline managers fooled Churchill into green lighting the forced appropriation of Middlesex's best farmland, on the pretext that the RAF needed a bigger field near London than Northolt. In the movie all the airliners are prop-driven; but De Havilland has just produced the first jet, the Comet, and its fatal metal-fatigue flaws are not yet understood.

Here on view is the half-forgotten period when passengers embarked so near the lounge that friends could wave them on board; when stewardesses, not Tannoys, addressed travellers courteously and by name; when security precautions were cursory; when BOAC and Pan Am embodied national pride; and, more fancifully, when a cabbie would give a foreign couple a tour of 'the real London' ending in his own home.

Interestingly the main plot concerns an Auschwitz survivor: very rare in film fiction 50 years ago. This Austrian orphan is diverted from marrying an elderly ex-GI in Wisconsin by meeting a young hydrologist who wants to make the desert bloom in the new Israel. Balcon seldom let his Jewishness show so clearly.

Britflick fans will enjoy plane-spotting faces such as James Robertson Justice, on the verge of Hollywood stardom in 'Land of the Pharoahs'; ever-fluttery, downtrodden Esma Cannon; Sid James, gambling on his wife's life with travel insurance; Terence Alexander, the future Charlie Hungerford of 'Bergerac', as a flight controller; Abraham Sofaer, celestial judge in 'A Matter of Life and Death', as a talkative Indian; and Bernard Lee, aka 'M', as a customs man with a nose for Steel's suitcase shenanigans.

Steel, as usual, projects suave unreliability, like a more reined-in Laurence Harvey. Twenty years later he would be outraging Corinne Cléry in 'Histoire d'O'.


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