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Encore (1951)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama | July 1952 (USA)
Adaptations of three short stories by W. Somerset Maugham comprise this anthology film where the celebrated author introduces each segment of the film in front of the camera.


Eric Ambler (the three stories adapted for the screen by), T.E.B. Clarke (the three stories adapted for the screen by) | 1 more credit »
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Nigel Patrick ... Tom Ramsay (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Roland Culver ... George Ramsay (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Alison Leggatt Alison Leggatt ... Freda Ramsay (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Charles Victor Charles Victor ... Mr. Bateman (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Peter Graves ... Philip Cronshaw (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Margaret Withers Margaret Withers ... Mrs. Bateman (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Margaret Vyner Margaret Vyner ... Gertrude Wilmot (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Dorothy Bramhall Dorothy Bramhall ... Secretary (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Patricia Raine Patricia Raine ... Office Girl (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Campbell Cotts Campbell Cotts ... Club Member (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Michael Trubshawe ... Ascot Man (segment "The Ant and the Grasshopper")
Kay Walsh ... Miss Molly Reid (segment "Winter Cruise")
Noel Purcell ... Tom, Captain (segment "Winter Cruise")
Ronald Squire ... Doctor (segment "Winter Cruise")
John Laurie ... Andrews, Engineer (segment "Winter Cruise")


The film is made from three short stories by W. Somerset Maugham. The first, "The Ant and the Grasshopper" concerns the trials and tribulations a ne'er-do-well brother, Tom Ramsey, puts his prim-and-proper businessman brother, George Ramsey through. The escapades that drive George to absolute distraction eventually wins the hand of the world's third richest girl, Margaret Vyne, for shiftless Tom; "Winter Cruise" finds the crew of a cargo boat becoming unglued by the endless chatter of a spinster passenger named Miss Reid. In a desperate attempt to silence the prattling busybody, the ship's officers browbeat a French steward, Pierre into making love to her. The results provide some astounding surprises for the officers, Pierre, and, for certain, Miss Reid; In "The Gigolo and the Gigolette" segment, beautiful daredevil Stella Cotman, who entertains the jaded guests of a resort hotel by diving nightly from an eighty-foot platform into a flaming tank, is losing her nerve. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


It's like eavesdropping on life itself! See more »


Comedy | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »





English | French

Release Date:

July 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

3 kohtaloa See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In "The Ant and the Grasshopper" and "Winter Cruise", several characters order pink gin cocktails. This is made with sweet gin, Angostura bitters, and lemon rind. See more »


Doctor: That nonsense about Englishwomen being icebergs is a mere fallacy made up by the French.
See more »


Follows Trio (1950) See more »


You Were Very Good To Me
Written by Bennett Scott, Harry Castling and Alan Mills
See more »

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User Reviews

A worthwhile encore
7 January 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Have always appreciated W Somerset Maugham's writing, it has been criticised for not holding up well but really like the sharpness of the prose, the insight, the irony and charm. He is not adapted enough on film, but when he is it makes for interesting results. Something that is evident in the portmanteau trilogy 'The Aesop's Fables Maugham Concerto Trilogy', consisting of 'Quartet' (1948), 'Trio' (1950) and 'Encore' (1951).

Like 'Quartet' the best marginally, due to "The Colonel's Lady" being my favourite of all the segments of the entire trilogy, while equally liking 'Trio'. Of the three, my least favourite is 'Encore', which is still worthwhile and not because it's bad, just that the other two's segments were more consistent and higher individually in quality. It's uneven but as was said with 'Quartet' and 'Trio' that was not unexpected, considering the usual standard of anthologies (am not meaning this in a derogatory manner). Like 'Trio', 'Encore' is made up of three segments, starting with "The Ant and the Grasshopper" and finishing with "Gigolo and Gigolette" with "Winter Cruise" sandwiched in between.

Unlike 'Quartet' and 'Trio', there are moments of pedestrian direction, apparent in some of "The Ant and the Grasshopper" and on occasions, but only fleetingly in, "The Gigolo and the Gigolette". Found myself not the biggest fan of "The Ant and the Grasshopper", which was admittedly amusing and had great comic timing from especially Nigel Patrick in one of the film's standout performances.

The pacing did need more kick though, while the characters are rather too cynical, while not being as interesting as the rich characterisation in particularly the "Sanitorium" segment in 'Trio', and the ending is on the absurd side.

On the other hand, "Winter Cruise" is very entertaining, lifted by the delightful (if not working for everyone) turn of Kay Walsh having a ball, and with a touch of pathos. The longest segment "The Gigolo and the Gigolette" is not loved by all, though it has been considered the best of the three (my favourite actually is "Winter Cruise", but mostly the pace is fine, it is the most unpredictable of the three with an ending that one does not expect and one is treated to a good deal of emotion and especially tension before getting there.

Have no issues with the performances really and Maugham's writing shines just as much as it did in 'Quartet' and 'Trio', the insight, irony and charm frequently present though the lightness was more apparent in those two films. He again introduces and bookends the film and each segment and he delivers it with the same qualities he brought to 'Quartet' and 'Trio'. Like the previous two films, 'Encore' is pleasing visually and appropriately scored.

In conclusion, worthwhile end to a very interesting and well done trilogy of portmanteaus. 7/10 Bethany Cox

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