At the height of his fame (his plays being much celebrated in London in the 1890's), Oscar Wilde angers the Marquis of Queensberry by having what is whispered and gossiped as a romantic ... See full summary »
A factory worker is fired from a reliable job and becomes a successful motorbike racer, until his wife threatens to leave him unless he comes to his senses. Produced by Ian Dalrymple. Written by Jack Lee.
A rather undiplomatic British diplomat takes up his new post in Spain accompanied by his son Nicholas. The posting is something of a disappointment to the father, who was hoping for a ... See full summary »
In wartime a young officer is killed during a raid to kill a German general at the house that used to belong to his grandmother. Before he dies he talks about a treasure that was hidden ... See full summary »
This film really is as good as people say. It's worth watching for the locations, the photography and that gallery of British stars. As soon as I saw Joan Hickson chatting to Barbara Windsor about lipstick shades I was hooked. The script is often funny, despite the harrowing subject matter (every parent's nightmare), but I can't help feeling it would have been much better directed if made 10
years earlier. Films of the 40s had a comic snap that the 50s lost. In fact, it sometimes looks like a 40s script made in the 50s. It's just that opportunities for comedy are lost. A film with this structure is picaresque - it's an excuse to get your foot in the door and nose around other people's front rooms and meet a lot of people you wouldn't otherwise. More could have been made of the
encounters with Thora Hird ("Take the door with you, dear, as far as it will go.") and the fat lady in the newsagents who blames the Russians. Why the
Russians? "Well, if we knew that we'd know everything." The boy on the bike
could have been more of a character. And the girl at the garage (gas station to you) is just a Rank starlet with her painfully refined accent and crisp summer dress (for dispensing petrol?). Some of the best bits are back at the police
station with the excellent David Farrar and the sergeants who have to read a
pile of trashy novels as part of the investigation. Well worth a look.
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