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The Horse's Mouth (1958)

 -  Comedy  -  11 November 1958 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 2,324 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 28 critic

A somewhat vulgar but dedicated painter searches for the perfect realization of his artistic vision, much to the chagrin of others.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: The Horse's Mouth (1958)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Kay Walsh ...
Dee Coker
Renee Houston ...
Sara Monday
Mike Morgan ...
Nosey
Robert Coote ...
Sir William Beeder
Arthur Macrae ...
A.W. Alabaster
Veronica Turleigh ...
Lady Beeder
...
Abel
Reginald Beckwith ...
Capt. Jones
...
Hickson
Gillian Vaughan ...
Lollie
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Storyline

Gulley Jimson is broke, difficult, conniving, uncouth, and a welcher - but an artist. The visions in his head may not really satisfy him when realized, but the quest continues, for the perfect wall. The Beeders leave for six weeks of vacation and return to find a 7000 pound committment and the wall of their living room a national treasure, even though living with a wall mural of feet is not their cup of tea. Then - in a bombed out church scheduled for demolition - THE wall that can become his vision. Written by Bruce Cameron <dumarest@midcoast.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Smart Alec

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 November 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

De la bouche du cheval  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Mike Morgan died ten days before the end of shooting. Some of his lines were dubbed by an unknown actor in post-production. See more »

Goofs

(at around 12 mins) Gully Simson is served a pint of beer in the pub. The amount of beer in the glass varies inconsistently in subsequent shots. See more »

Quotes

Gulley Jimson: Anyone at home? Mrs. Morton Graines Waring? She's gone to Java.
Abel: That's all right, I'll work down there. Come. I want to get started.
See more »

Connections

References The Czar Wants to Sleep (1934) See more »

Soundtracks

Lieutenant Kije
by Sergei Prokofiev (as Prokofieff)
Arranged by Kenneth V. Jones
Conducted by Muir Mathieson
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ageless, clever, endearing comedy
2 January 2005 | by (Seattle) – See all my reviews

"Horse's Mouth" certainly stands up well in it's advanced age; at 45 years old it has remained as timeless as any of the great comedic films.

One IMDb writer has tagged Gully as a "vulgar" painter, which goes to show that the sensitivities this film violated are still around. Pinching your loving ex's bum and tickling the rich lady's knee (shades of Groucho), though, are pretty tame today.

Gully Jimson is a rich character, Chaplin-like, who single-mindedly pursues painting while disillusioning aspiring young Nosey about the artist's life. All growled on tiptoes by one of film's classic great actors.

Jimson is a man who's given up all else, including health, wealth, conventional relationships, to live in a leaky houseboat with a vision. But as the story develops it, like all great literature, manages to puncture almost all of life's rationalizing balloons. Jimson is valorized as is Don Quixote, without suggesting that his hero's journey is a painless one.

All is set in a colorful environment with a delightful if conventionally unpolished cast, all the improbably gleeful turns that make the Marx movies so delightful, and a director who contrives seamlessly with Guiness to create a clever and hilarious marvel that can be enjoyed over and over.

Heck yeah, there's even a chase scene! And pull your socks up!

The DVD version includes a short by Pennebaker that feels as fresh and contemporary, accompanied by a Duke Ellington tune, which played along with "Horse's" original release.


22 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Who was the artist Jimson is based on? Meryllevykryza
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Prints of the paintings? sissoed
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