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The Man in the White Suit (1951)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi | April 1952 (USA)
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2:46 | Trailer
An altruistic chemist invents a fabric which resists wear and stain as a boon to humanity, but big business and labor realize it must be suppressed for economic reasons.

Writers:

Roger MacDougall (play), Roger MacDougall (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alec Guinness ... Sidney Stratton
Joan Greenwood ... Daphne Birnley
Cecil Parker ... Alan Birnley
Michael Gough ... Michael Corland
Ernest Thesiger ... Sir John Kierlaw
Howard Marion-Crawford ... Cranford (as Howard Marion Crawford)
Henry Mollison ... Hoskins
Vida Hope Vida Hope ... Bertha
Patric Doonan Patric Doonan ... Frank
Duncan Lamont ... Harry
Harold Goodwin ... Wilkins
Colin Gordon ... Hill
Joan Harben Joan Harben ... Miss Johnson
Arthur Howard Arthur Howard ... Roberts
Roddy Hughes ... Green
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Storyline

Sidney Stratton, a humble inventor, develops a fabric which never gets dirty or wears out. This would seem to be a boon for mankind, but the established garment manufacturers don't see it that way; they try to suppress it. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Should they let him play...or should they put him away? See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

April 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Man in the White Suit See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,874, 18 November 2012

Gross USA:

$8,718

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$8,718
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Ealing Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System) (Gaumont-Kalee)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Cecil Parker and Alec Guinness would appear together in the classic Ealing comedy the lady killers See more »

Goofs

When Hill disturbs Michael Corland at the table, he holds a piece of paper. The paper swaps hands between shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Alan Birnley: Now that calm and sanity have returned to the textile industry, I feel it my duty reveal something of the true story behind the recent crisis, a story which we were able, happily, to keep out of the newspapers at the time.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

Have you ever seen a perfect movie? See this one!
3 November 2011 | by davidtraversa-1See all my reviews

I couldn't believe the perfection of this movie. It's so tightly made that nothing is superfluous in its entire run. The dialogs are perfect, witty, sharp, funny; the main idea for the script is superb (to invent a product that defies obsolescence is a No-No in contemporary industry) and the actors are absolute perfection thanks to their own art plus a firm and secure direction by Alexander Mackendrick.

I didn't find Alec Guinness role particularly funny but I found the Elderly Industry Boss (Ernest Thesiger from legendary "The Bride of Frankestein") simply a scream. Every scene he's in, he steals it completely, nobody else exists on the screen. What an actor!

Joan Greenwood was the kind of personality that we only see once in a century. Her voice and delivery are something impossible to duplicate and thoroughly unique. The only wrong thing with her in this movie was her hairdo. Did she comb it herself without looking in a mirror before the first day of shooting and never again till they were through filming? Did she get a hairdressing student rejected by the beauty school? Her hairdo is too dreary to be unintentional.

A fantastic movie, entertaining from beginning to end, with a very clever twist impossible to predict and resolved precisely at the right moment and by a perfectly acceptable chemical explanation. A film that only the British could have made with their sensational Black Humor that nobody else can imitate. You'll find the look of this movie quite old fashioned, but having been made in 1951 we cannot expect anything different right? forget about its looks, sit down, watch it and you'll be thrilled to have discovered this precious jewel of a film.


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