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The Ladykillers (1955)

7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 18,946 users  
Reviews: 121 user | 66 critic

Five diverse oddball criminal types planning a bank robbery rent rooms on a cul-de-sac from an octogenarian widow under the pretext that they are classical musicians.

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Title: The Ladykillers (1955)

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

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Cecil Parker ...
Claude (a.k.a. 'Major Courtney')
...
Louis (a.k.a. 'Mr. Harvey')
...
Danny Green ...
Jack Warner ...
The Superintendent
...
Philip Stainton ...
The Sergeant
Frankie Howerd ...
The Barrow Boy
Edit

Storyline

A gang planning a 'job' find themselves living with a little old lady, who thinks they are musicians. When the gang set out to kill Mrs Wilberforce, they run into one problem after another, and they get what they deserve. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Meet "The Unholy Five"...The Most Befuddled Set of Assorted Thugs That Ever Fouled Up a Million Dollar Bank Robbery!! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 February 1956 (Belgium)  »

Also Known As:

The Lady Killers  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(colour) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Premiere voted this movie as one of "The 50 Greatest Comedies Of All Time" in 2006. See more »

Goofs

When Mrs. Wilberforce is scolding the gang after she figures out they're crooks, she says "I am shocked by this relevation." There is no such word; obviously she meant to say "revelation." See more »

Quotes

One-Round: [looking blankly at his cello] Are we supposed to make noises with these things? What kind o' noises?
Louis: Who is she?
Professor Marcus: Not "noises," One-Round, *music*!
Louis: I said what does she mean, you...
[Professor Marcus shushes him and turns on the record, dancing a bit to the music]
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, roses are shown, to highlight the fact that William Rose wrote the screenplay. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Churchill: The Hollywood Years (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Minuet in E major
(uncredited)
Written by Luigi Boccherini, arranged for string ensemble
[playing on the phonograph whenever the robbers are pretending to be practicing]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

not just the perfect comedy
30 October 1999 | by (Oxford, England) – See all my reviews

One of the Ealing studio's finest achievements, this immensely entertaining crime caper looks at first glance to be pure, inconsequential entertainment. But it doubles as a sly, subtle rummage around the psychology of the respectable, old-fashioned middle classes, with Katie Johnson deserving top billing alongside Alec Guinness (she doesn't get it) for her remarkable turn as the lady in question, the redoubtable Mrs Wilberforce.

No less than the not-quite-ruthless-enough gang of criminals who scheme in her house, she lives in her own private universe with its own particular rules and values. Though she begins the film as the stereotype of a maddeningly officious pillar of local society, it gradually emerges that there is a freer as well as shrewder spirit locked in there than meets the eye. The umbrella she is always losing (she herself suggests that she unconsciously _wants_ to lose it), the escapologist parrot, and most poignantly the memory of a 21st birthday party interrupted by the end of the Victorian age, all hint at an inner life that the comic plot could easily have done without. The screenplay, deservedly Oscar-nominated, has the genius and economy to provide us with all these hints without ever slowing down a tightly-edited and superbly directed narrative.

The other characters are a good deal simpler, but Alec Guinness is in impressively seedy form as 'Professor' Marcus and Cecil Parker makes an appealing Major. Peter Sellers and Herbert Lom don't have a great deal to do and don't try to hog the limelight, but there's a nice cameo from Frankie Howerd. Ealing went out on a high.


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Has anyone else found stardom in their 70s? ganglehog
I knew this new Ladykillers was a remake!! dominb01
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Favourite Sellers Film Olga_baikova
What's the Music?? Not Boccherini Op11/no5 but............???? gentlemedusa1
Weird cut in the film... JamesTCT
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