- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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Mackendrick's final film for Ealing Studio, and along with "Kind Hearts and Coronets," on of the studio's darkest comedies. Guinness and Johnson hit all the right notes as the eccentric leader of a gang of crooks and the old lady boarding her room to them respectively, Sellers' first great film. A witty, Oscar-nominated screenplay brings farce to the heist genre and comments on Britain's inability to modernize after WWII. Hilarious, with deft characterization. I give it a 4/5.
One of my favorite movies - it's absolutely perfect! Katie Johnson is so perfect in her role it's hard to believe she's acting. The mix of personalities between the crooks helps to add to the comedic effect especially when they're going to kill the old lady. Also, you couldn't ask for a better ending that leaves you with such a good feeling. I'm always excited when I get to watch this film - it never gets old!
My husband and I caught this film while fighting insomnia one night. It was three in the morning and we were mesmerized from the outset of this film. We've seen it again several times and find it just as riveting. It is hilarious! This film is perfectly cast with Alec Guinness leading the gang and Katie Johnson as the little old lady who wreaks havoc unintentionally. Why the Coen brothers decided to remake this classic is simply beyond me, as you cannot remake a perfect film. The original screenplay was nominated for an Academy Award and deservedly so. I seldom give five stars to any film but this is one of those little gems that deserves it. There is absolutely nothing to dislike about this film!
First Class Movie
- James Smith
I wish I had the wit and skill to produce a movie this good. First class.
One Of The Best Movie Comedies
- david gedalecia
Like a fine wine, "The Ladykillers" has aged well since I saw it in 1955 at the Sutton Theater in New York City. In 1994, Herbert Lom, who stars as Louis, the black-attired gangster in the film, mentioned disparagingly that Hollywood was thinking of remaking the film. Indeed, Hollywood did, and Lom was correct: it could in no way be compared to the original in terms of comedic subtlety and characterization. In the original, Alec Guinness, as Professor Marcus, and Katie Johnson, as the prim Mrs. Wilberforce, steal the show, and the supporting cast, which includes a young Peter Sellers and the brooding Lom, is outstanding. This is English humor at its best.
One of the Most Nearly Perfect Comedies Ever
- Lis Steiner
If you love dark, subtle, British humor you MUST see this movie! It's one of the most perfectly written, cast, directed and crafted films ever made. In fact, I really can't think of a single flaw in it, and there are many, many moments that are simply gems.Mrs. Wilberforce (Katie Johnson) is a little old lady who -- while merrily going about her daily business -- unknowingly and obliviously causes chaos to those around her wherever she goes. After renting a room to "Professor Marcus" (Alec Guinness), who is actually a master criminal with a tenuous grasp on sanity, the fun begins. Prof. Marcus and his gangster pals use Mrs. W's house as their headquarters to plan and execute a big armored car robbery. The professor arranges it so that Mrs. W is unknowingly involved in their heist, but when everything goes pear shaped and she finds out about the robbery, the quintet reluctantly decides that the little old lady must be killed so she won't be able to ID them. True to form, Mrs. W unconsciously leaves pandemonium in her wake as she disrupts the gangster's murder plot, with each man dying off one by one. In the end, frail Mrs. W is the only one left alive and is dumbfounded to find that each criminal has inexplicably "disappeared" -- and equally dumbfounded (but delighted) to discover that, by a twist of fate, she gets to keep all of the loot.Some of the best scenes are Guinness' intro in which he looks like a complete lunatic; when he first meets Mrs. W's cockatoo; when the men are helping Mrs. W give one of her parrots its medicine; the scene in the police station, especially when the cart driver is giving a description of his runaway horse and he says, "...and he goes by the name of Dennis"; the *entire* scene from the time the men try to make their getaway until they return to Mrs. W's home; the tea party and the little old ladies who attend, and on and on and on.In short, see this classic movie!
- Ray Marlitz
"5 Bank Robbers try to kill an old woman - unsuccessfully5 Bank Robbers try to kill themselves - successfully"
The Lady Killers - An English Commedy
We really enjoyed watching this unique comedy. It may have been classified as an English film, but it surely did "tickle our American ribs." We feel it is a real classic, and will encourage our friends and family to see the movie when it shows again on March 6th! Thanks TCM for the good, clean, funny movie!!!
The Lady killers
- craig brewster
having been stationed in England as an American, Humor is no different than ares. Just the slang of different areas of England, Scotland etc. Learning of customs and all. This movie as do all english films makes one want to go back to the UK.
if you enjoy english comedy, this one has it all. especially the facsial expressions.