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Only Two Can Play (1962)

John Lewis is bored by his librarian's job and henpecked at home. Then Liz, wife of a local counciller, sets her sights on him. But this is risky stuff in a Welsh valleys town - if he and ... See full summary »

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Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Nominated for 4 BAFTA Film Awards. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
John Lewis
...
Liz
Virginia Maskell ...
Jean Lewis
Kenneth Griffith ...
Ieuan Jenkins (as Kenneth Griffiths)
Raymond Huntley ...
Vernon
David Davies ...
Benyon
Maudie Edwards ...
Meredith Edwards ...
Clergyman on the Committee
...
Salter
Frederick Piper ...
Mr. Davies
...
Hyman
Eynon Evans ...
Town Hall Clerk
John Arnatt ...
Bill
Sheila Manahan ...
Mrs. Jenkins
...
Gareth L. Probert
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Storyline

John Lewis is bored by his librarian's job and henpecked at home. Then Liz, wife of a local counciller, sets her sights on him. But this is risky stuff in a Welsh valleys town - if he and Liz ever manage to consummate their affair, that is. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 March 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Segunda Mulher  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Richard Attenborough (Gareth L. Probert) and Gerald Sim (Cigarette Thief at Party) were brothers-in-law in real life. Attenborough was married to Sim's elder sister Sheila Sim from 1945 until his death in 2014. See more »

Goofs

When John mentions going to parties just so that people can get the name of his tailor, the shot before shows Jean with her arms down. When it cuts back, she is resting her head on her right hand. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Pretty Girl in Library: Good morning. Have you "Conditioned Reflexes"?
John Lewis: Uh...
Pretty Girl in Library: It's by Pavlov.
John Lewis: Yes... It's out at the moment but if you'd like to leave your name, I could reserve it for you.
See more »

Connections

References Now, Voyager (1942) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Modest Welsh comidrama with Sellers perfectly cast & played
14 April 2011 | by (Salisbury, United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Having have lived in the Welsh Valleys for a good while a few years ago, I really feel for this poignant, witty and largely forgotten and unknown little drama about a librarian. And his wife and his little 'adventure' on the side.

It's far sweeter than the average English kitchen sink, is superbly adapted from a Kinglsey Amis novel and features an array of familiar faces, from John Le Messieur and Richard Attenborough with Kenneth Griffith as a rather ridiculed and pathetically nerdy fellow librarian.

Peter Sellers is natural, the accent pitch perfect and his wife and family (great little daughter, full of big-eyed mischief & wonder) believable. His foray into an affair is rather glaringly obvious for a close-knit valley town to realistically withstand though I think there's a good balance between 'nudge-nudge, wink-wink' innuendo, which is usually wittily rather than crudely expressed and the more hum-drum, everyday scenes. Comedy is in there, but as a supporting act, so to speak and is nicely done.

Librarians generally get a rather staid and boring label and it would be far too obvious - and wrong - to have a zany character, or Sellers playing one. But, as in any profession, libraries employ different sorts and get all manner of customers.

Overall there's a warmth and freshness that I find endearing, though I might be a little biased. If you get a chance to see it, go for it. Apart from my originally seeing it on UK TV about 6 years ago, I've not seen that it's been shown since and only now have I been reacquainted with it on DVD. You can find it on The Peter Sellers Collection, included with it are I'm Alright Jack and Heaven's Above along with a disc that features a compilation of Seller's best TV work.


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