Classic Movie Hub (CMH)

The Man in the White Suit

December 04, 2019 <m>(Wednesday)
Film Forum
209 West Houston St.
New York City, New York 10014 (US)
Phone: 212-727-8110

Event Details

(1951, Alexander Mackendrick) "Do you know what a long chain molecule is?" Ex-Cambridge chemistry whiz kid Alec Guinness, now reduced to lab dishwasher, steals time to work on his pet project: a fabric that never wears out and never gets dirty - but the only one with faith in his loony idea is mill boss Cecil Parker's sexily low-voiced daughter Joan Greenwood ("The suit. It looks as if it's wearing you"). Then, after a few of those darned explosions, his theories actually work (the rhythmic gurgles, squirts and drips of the hero's lab apparatus were later recorded with added lyrics as "The White Suit Samba"), but then he's got to contend with planned-obsolescense-lovers Capital (personified by ancient, vulture-like Ernest Thesiger, of Bride of Frankenstein fame) and Labour (his landlady worries, "What's to become of my bit of washing when there's no washing to do?") - but as the hunt to suppress closes in, the Laws of Physics provide the climax. A landmark of British cinema - and high point of the famed "Ealing Comedy" - by the unsung Mackendrick (The Ladykillers, Sweet Smell of Success). DCP. Approx. 85 min.

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