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Three Men in a Boat (1956)

Approved | | Animation, Comedy, Romance | 4 January 1957 (UK)
Three London gentlemen take vacation rowing down the Thames, encountering various mishaps and misadventures along the way.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jimmy Edwards ...
Sophie Clutterbuck
Primrose Porterhouse
Bluebell Porterhouse
Mrs. Willis
Joan Haythorne ...
Mrs. Porterhouse
Campbell Cotts ...
Ambrose Porterhouse
Clara Willis
Charles Lloyd Pack ...
Mr. Quilp
Robertson Hare ...
A.E. Matthews ...
Crabtree, 1st Old Gentleman
Miles Malleson ...
Baskcomb, 2nd Old Gentleman


Harris, J, and George decide to take a holiday boating up the Thames to Oxford. Battling against Hampton Court maze, tents, rain, locks, and Henley Regatta the accident-prone threesome have one success anyway - they meet Sophie, Primrose and Bluebell. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

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Release Date:

4 January 1957 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Három ember egy csónakban  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


A box office disappointment in its native England, the film was nevertheless enthusiastically received in France. See more »


After the picnic, the mud spatters from the dog on the girl's dress disappear in the medium shot. See more »


Version of Three Men in a Boat (1975) See more »


Two Lovely Black Eyes
Written by Charles Coborn
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User Reviews

Tedious and unfunny....not what you're looking for in a comedy!
20 July 2011 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

The DVD for "Three Men in a Boat" has no captioning. So, if you are hard of hearing or have difficulty with the accents, then you are screwed.

The first thing I noticed about this film is the odd casting decision for the leads. While Jimmy Edwards and David Tomlinson seem like natural choices for a comedy, I cannot understand casting Laurence Harvey as the third lead. After all, he had all the comic flair of a mortician and he was simply too pretty to be believable as the friend of the two idiots, Tomlinson and Edwards. Perhaps this odd casting choice can be explained, just a bit, because Harvey still hadn't established much of a screen persona, as his best films were ahead of him.

The film is a very slight comedy involving three male friends who decide to spend their holiday punting down the Thames (for non-Brits, this is 'boating down river'). They are definitely roughing it--camping out and cooking in the great (and often wet) outdoors. Such a vacation seems completely miserable but the three have some adventures (and, now that I think about it, this is practically the same plot as "Deliverance").

What bothered me about this film (aside from the casting) was the obviousness of the comedy. This is not to be confused with a sparkling Ealing comedy, as pratfalls and occasionally silly sound effects are the norm for "Three Men in a Boat". Oddly, however, despite this, the film often was very, very mundane--a very strange combination to say the least. As a result, I found the film tedious and unfunny.

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