71 user 58 critic

The Lavender Hill Mob (1951)

Approved | | Comedy, Crime | 10 September 1951 (Sweden)
2:25 | Trailer
A meek bank clerk who oversees the shipment of bullion joins with an eccentric neighbor to steal gold bars and smuggle them out of the country as miniature Eiffel Towers.


Charles Crichton


T.E.B. Clarke (original screenplay)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Alec Guinness ... Holland
Stanley Holloway ... Pendlebury
Sidney James ... Lackery
Alfie Bass ... Shorty
Marjorie Fielding Marjorie Fielding ... Mrs. Chalk
Edie Martin ... Miss Evesham
John Salew John Salew ... Parkin
Ronald Adam ... Turner
Arthur Hambling Arthur Hambling ... Wallis
Gibb McLaughlin ... Godwin
John Gregson ... Farrow
Clive Morton ... Station Sergeant
Sydney Tafler Sydney Tafler ... Clayton
Marie Burke ... Senora Gallardo
Audrey Hepburn ... Chiquita


Holland, a shy retiring man, dreams of being rich and living the good life. Faithfully, for twenty years, he has worked as a bank transfer agent for the delivery of gold bullion. One day he befriends Pendlebury, a maker of souvenirs. Holland remarks that, with Pendlebury's smelting equipment, one could forge the gold into harmless-looking toy Eiffel Towers and smuggle the gold from England into France. Soon afterwards, the two plant a story to gain the services of professional criminals Lackery and Shorty. Together, the four plot their crime, leading to unexpected twists and turns. Written by Rick Gregory <rag.apa@email.apa.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He stole $3,000,000 in gold and that's a lot of BULLion! See more »


Comedy | Crime


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Audrey Hepburn and Frank Forsyth, who both have minor roles in the film, would later co-star in Robin and Marian (1976). See more »


When Holland and Pendlebury ascend the stairs drunk, Pendlebury loudly recites a piece of prose, but his lips are obviously saying something completely different. See more »


Lackery: Bellamy's? In Bromley?
Shorty: That's right. Last June. Twelver.
Lackery: I was casing that joint the night you got pinched.
Shorty: Well, what do you know? Shorty Fisher.
Lackery: Nice to meet you.
Pendlebury: Excuse me, I may be a bit slow but do I understand that in fact, you two are both professional criminals?
Shorty: Well, what else do you take us for, rutty snoopers?
Lackery: What's the setup?
See more »


Referenced in Bad Eggs (2003) See more »


The Eton Boating Song
(1863) (uncredited)
Music by Algernon Drummond
Lyrics by William Johnson
See more »

User Reviews

The Lavender Hill Mob
12 September 2016 | by oOoBarracudaSee all my reviews

Alec Guinness is the reason for that emoji with eyes replaced with hearts, right? I mean, seriously, I first met Alec Guinness while watching The Bridge on the River Kwai, and his turn as the seriously extreme Colonel Nicholson is one that will stay with the viewer long after the film ends. Guinness reintroduced himself to me in Lawrence of Arabia, another extreme role proving the man behind the roles that had blown me away was someone to see more of. I'm currently on a quest to see as many Guinness films as I can which led me to his turn in the 1951 film directed by Charles Crichton, The Lavender Hill Mob. In the Lavender Hill Mob, Guinness plays an unassuming bank clerk who decides to put a plan in motion to bring his life something more. In a classic British comedy, which exposed a whole new side of Alec Guinness, The Lavender Hill Mob is a film to see.

Holland (Alec Guinness) is a feeble, regimented, shy bank clerk, who is constantly reminded that he is not getting any younger. After 20 years, he has worked for the same bank as their agent who oversees the deliveries of gold bullion. After a chance meeting with a Mr. Pendlebury (Stanley Holloway), a maker of souvenirs, Holland realizes (in a very Leo Bloom a la The Producers way) that with Mr. Pendlebury's tools and expertise, the pair could steal gold from the bank and melt it into miniature Eiffel Tower souvenirs, smuggling massive amounts of money for themselves. After becoming committed to their ideas, the unlikely pair put a plan in motion with the help of a couple of career criminals, Lackery (Sidney James) and Shorty (Alfie Bass). Of course, the plan doesn't go as smoothly as it was first conceived, and it becomes a comedy of errors for the plan to succeed, a true treat for audiences.

British films are so fun, the comedic dialogue so unique to films that come from across the pond, is second to none. The writing in The Lavender Hill Mob is sensational, filled with jokes or subtle lines, it is a film that has something new to give upon each viewing. The comedic timing is also a standout in The Lavender Hill Mob. Each actor plays a great role and proves their talents for comedic acting with fantastic performances in The Lavender Hill Mob. Another surprising standout in this film was the score. People don't expect much in the way of a musical score in a comedy, The Lavender Hill Mob blows that stigma out of the water. The score, the comedic acting, the performances make The Lavender Hill Mob a film to be sure to watch, especially if you're tired of the mindless comedies that are so plentiful in American cinemas. The show stopper is Alec Guinness, I am not sure this wonderful film would be as wonderful without him. The Lavender Hill Mob certainly won't be the last Alec Guinness film that I see.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 71 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »





English | French | Portuguese

Release Date:

10 September 1951 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Lavender Hill Mob See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Ealing Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Gaumont Kalee) (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed