7.7/10
2,588
36 user 28 critic

The Horse's Mouth (1958)

Approved | | Comedy | 11 November 1958 (USA)
A somewhat vulgar but dedicated painter searches for the perfect realization of his artistic vision, much to the chagrin of others.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Major Jock Sinclair has been in this Highland regiment since he joined as a boy piper. During the Second World War, as Second-in-Command, he was made acting Commanding Officer. Now the ... See full summary »

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Alec Guinness, John Mills, Susannah York
Last Holiday (1950)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a lonely, unappreciated farm equipment salesman discovers he has only weeks to live, he withdraws his savings for a final holiday at a 'posh' resort.

Director: Henry Cass
Stars: Alec Guinness, Beatrice Campbell, Kay Walsh
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A middle-aged widower (Guinness) and his son go to Paris on vacation and try to find wives for each other in this charming romantic comedy. In HD.

Director: Robert Hamer
Stars: Alec Guinness, Odile Versois, Vernon Gray
Little Dorrit (1987)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Arthur Clennam returns to London after working abroad for many years with his now deceased father. Almost at once he becomes involved in the problems of his mother's seamstress Amy Dorrit ... See full summary »

Director: Christine Edzard
Stars: Derek Jacobi, Alec Guinness, Joan Greenwood
The Promoter (1952)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A charming and ambitious young man finds many ways to raise himself through the ranks in business and social standing- some honest, some not quite so. If he can just manage to avoid a ... See full summary »

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Alec Guinness, Glynis Johns, Valerie Hobson
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Adam Lemp, the Dean of the Briarwood Music Foundation, has passed on his love of music to his four early adult daughters - Thea, Emma, Kay and Ann - who live with him and his sister, the ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Curtiz
Stars: Claude Rains, John Garfield, Jeffrey Lynn
All at Sea (1957)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A seasick sea captain commands an amusement pier despite local opposition.

Director: Charles Frend
Stars: Alec Guinness, Harry Locke, Frederick Piper
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In this classic adaptation of Emile Zola's novel, a tortured train engineer falls in love with a troubled married woman who has helped her husband commit a murder.

Director: Jean Renoir
Stars: Jean Gabin, Julien Carette, Simone Simon
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Prior to a city council election, the collapse of a building leaves a land developer and his political backers defending themselves against a scandal.

Director: Francesco Rosi
Stars: Rod Steiger, Salvo Randone, Guido Alberti
Kanal (1957)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In 1944, during the Warsaw uprising against the Nazis, Polish Lieutenant Zadra and his resistance fighters use Warsaw's sewer system to escape the German encirclement.

Director: Andrzej Wajda
Stars: Teresa Izewska, Tadeusz Janczar, Wienczyslaw Glinski
Les cousins (1959)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Charles is a young provincial coming up to Paris to study law. He shares his cousin Paul's flat. Paul is a kind of decadent boy, a disillusioned pleasure-seeker, always dragging along with ... See full summary »

Director: Claude Chabrol
Stars: Gérard Blain, Jean-Claude Brialy, Juliette Mayniel
Jalsaghar (1958)
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Depicts the end days of a decadent zamindar (landlord) in Bengal, and his efforts to uphold his family prestige even when faced with economic adversity.

Director: Satyajit Ray
Stars: Chhabi Biswas, Sardar Akhtar, Gangapada Basu
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Kay Walsh ...
Dee Coker
...
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
Edit

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 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 November 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un genio anda suelto  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Joyce Carey, the author of the novel which inspired the film, based the role of the self-destructive painter on his good friend, the great Welsh poet Dylan Thomas. 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: Of course you want to be an artist. Everybody does, once. But they get over it, like measles and chicken pox.
Nosey: But there have to be artists!
Gulley Jimson: And lunatics too! But why go and live in an asylum before you're sent for?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Curious George (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

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

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Alec Guinness, Kay Walsh & Mike Morgan Are Great
8 February 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Highly original and entertaining, this film explores the bizarre world of artist Gulley Jimson (Alec Guinness) whom we meet as he is released from jail. He's a scammer and a reprobate, but he's also a great artist who doesn't believe in art. Yet he is compelled to paint.

With the help of maybe girl friend (Kay Walsh) they try to track down the paintings sold on the cheap to pay off the debts of his former wife (Renee Houston). The art dealer (Ernest Thesiger) is a crook and has cheated everyone by telling them the paintings are worthless. So Gulley tries to find an art patron who will support him. He finds an older couple of patrons but after they go on holiday, he moves into their apartment and trashes it while he paints a mural.

Gulley is always looking for "a big wall" on which to paint his big paintings and finally finds the side of a building about to be demolished. His compulsion is so great, he MUST paint on this wall but has no money, so he "sells" sections of the wall to amateurs who combine to create a fabulous urban mural (to his design). This project seems to assuage his compulsions, but after the wall's destruction he's off to find a new horizon... or is he? This is one of Guinness' great performances. In a comic role with serious undertones, few actors were ever better than Guinness, and he grabs onto this quirky role with great gusto. Indeed, Guinness even wrote the script (based on a novel by Joyce Cary). At age 44, he's totally believable as the grizzled 60-ish artist. The great and underrated Kay Walsh turns in a ferociously funny turn as the friend he owes money to. Walsh's character lives in fury that she has been cheated and short-changed by life. Together, Walsh and Guinness burn up the screen with their acting talent.

Co-stars add just the right touch. Houston and Thesiger are old pros. Michael Gough plays the obsessed sculptor. Veronica Turleigh and Robert Coote are fun as the art patrons. Gillian Vaughan is a hoot as the model. May Hallatt is funny as the scrub woman.

A special word must be said for Mike Morgan who plays Nosey, the adoring and gangling young man who follows Gulley everywhere. Morgan is just terrific here with just the right blend of awkward youth and that special British eccentric comedic touch. In his late 20s, Morgan died suddenly of meningitis before the film was finished, and several of his scenes were dubbed by another actor.

This is a great film.


30 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Movies about artists latesnake
Who was the artist Jimson is based on? Meryllevykryza
Lt. Kije nanonta
How did Mike Morgan die? stevem-26
Inconclusive ending (possible spolilers) tomrfbook
Gulley Jimson: 'It's the same thing, Sister.' lebrae554
Discuss The Horse's Mouth (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?