6.8/10
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4 user

The Birthday Present (1957)

A top salesman with a U.K. toy firm foolishly brings an expensive watch back from a German trip for his wife's birthday. This is illegal in 1950's Britain and when Customs discover the ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tony Britton ...
Simon Scott
...
Jean Scott
Jack Watling ...
Bill Thompson
...
Colonel Wilson
Walter Fitzgerald ...
Sir John Dell
...
Bates (as Howard Marion Crawford)
David Hutcheson ...
Ex. R.A.F. Type
...
Hawkins
Lockwood West ...
Mr. Barraclough
...
Magistrate
...
Customs Officer
...
Jr. Customs Officer
Ernest Clark ...
Barrister
Thorley Walters ...
Photographer
...
Charlie
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Storyline

A top salesman with a U.K. toy firm foolishly brings an expensive watch back from a German trip for his wife's birthday. This is illegal in 1950's Britain and when Customs discover the watch he is charged and, unusually, given a prison sentence. Not having the money to appeal he has to serve his time hoping the details don't get out and he won't lose his job. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

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Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

31 October 1957 (UK)  »

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Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Fireside Serenade
(uncredited)
Music by Trevor Duncan
Boosey & Hawkes Ltd
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User Reviews

a present for sylvia syms causes a sacking

Tony Britton stars as a toy salesman who while on business abroad in Germany foolishly hides a gift (a watch for his wife played by sylvia syms) in a toy to avoid paying the duty. His workmate Jack Watling gives him a name of a barrister who in turn introduces him to a jobbing solicitor (played by Howard Marion-Crawford). The confident bluster of Marion-Crawford is a total contrast to his ineptitude which results in Tony Britton being imprisoned for 3 months. As a result of this he loses his job and the second half of the film deals with his efforts to rebuild his working life. Great cast includes the gorgeous Sylvia Syms, the excellent Geoffrey Keen as well as the superb Marion Crawford. This thoughtful drama is more wordy than action but remains a well made piece of British cinema.


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