Once More with Ealing!

March 26th, 2024
Author: Meredith Taylor


1949 saw the release of a trio of classic British comedies that really cemented Ealing’s place in history as this country’s finest film studios: Passport to Pimlico, Kind Hearts and Coronets and Whiskey Galore!

75 years later, these films offer a window into the hilarious nature of British eccentricity and ingenuity, and one that shows a healthy disdain for authority coupled with a not inconsiderable dose of anarchy. Today in the world of woke these features seem as fresh, innovative and, above all, as amusing as ever.

To celebrate its 75th Anniversary Ealing’s most endearing crime caper The Lavender Hill Mob (out 29 March) gets an up-to-date restoration and a nationwide re-release. Cinemas will be offering a selection of Ealing classics, both comedy and drama, under the banner ONCE MORE WITH EALING!

Other classics to revisit include Ealing stalwart Alec Guinness and his gang of thieves undone by Katie Johnson and her parrots in gloriously restored 4k Technicolor The Ladykillers along with ground-breaking and provocative dramas such as Pool Of London and It Always Rains on Sunday the archetypal portmanteau horror championed by everyone from John Landis to Kenneth Branagh, Dead of Night, and that man Guinness again, facing off against big business as they try to quash his miracle invention in The Man in the White Suit.

Also joining these bigger Ealing names are some lesser-known gems: Jean Simmons is blackmailed by her no-good husband back from the dead in Cage of Gold, Tommy Trinder impresses in a rare dramatic role in Ealing’s wartime ode to the Auxiliary Fire Service and their vital work during the Blitz in The Bells Go Down, and Lease of Life, written by Eric Ambler and starring Robert Donat as a Vicar who delivers an impromptu sermon that sets tongues wagging in Ealing’s only treatise on religion.


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