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Lavender Hill Mob

Lavender Hill Mob

Director: Charles Crichton,

Cast: Alec Guinness, Stanley Holloway, Sidney James


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Considered by many to be one of Sir Alec Guinness' best comedies, The Lavender Hill Mob is a great little under-appreciated film. The DVD is part of a whole collection of Guinness' films released by Anchor Bay Entertainment, which also includes Kind Hearts and Coronets, The Ladykillers, The Man in the White Suit and The Captain's


Considered by many to be one of Sir Alec Guinness' best comedies, The Lavender Hill Mob is a great little under-appreciated film. The DVD is part of a whole collection of Guinness' films released by Anchor Bay Entertainment, which also includes Kind Hearts and Coronets, The Ladykillers, The Man in the White Suit and The Captain's Paradise. This film is presented in pan and scan with a 1.33:1 aspect ratio, and includes a theatrical trailer, a bio of Guinness and a collectable 4 page booklet.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
A 1951 comedy classic from Britain's famed Ealing Studios, The Lavender Hill Mob benefits from droll scripting (by T.E.B. Clarke, who won an Oscar for his screenplay), airy direction (by A Fish Called Wanda's Charles Crichton) and, most of all, the delightfully eccentric performance of Alec Guinness. A classically trained actor with extensive stage experience, Guinness seemed very much at home in the madcap Ealing comedies. Here he plays timid bank clerk Henry Holland, who hatches a scheme for stealing the gold bullion he regularly escorts from refineries to vaults. With the help of a somewhat gormless friend (Stanley Holloway) and two Cockney crooks (Sidney James and Alfie Bass), Henry grabs a cool million in bullion -- which gets melted down, cast into small souvenir replicas of the Eiffel Tower, and shipped to France! Clarke's script abounds with complications and climaxes with a hilarious, masterfully choreographed chase sequence. Crichton is at the top of his game, whisking Guinness and company from one improbable situation to the next and wringing every drop of humor from each. The roles are perfectly cast, and the acting is uniformly excellent (by the way, look closely and you'll spot a young Audrey Hepburn in the opening sequence). This kind of character-driven comedy, sadly, has all but vanished from today's movies, but Lavender Hill Mob is a glorious reminder of an earlier, much funnier era. It also represents a tour de force for Guinness, an accomplished comic actor whose early screen triumphs have been ignored in the wake of his success as Star Wars' Obi-Wan Kenobi. The DVD includes a Guinness biography and the film's theatrical trailer as supplemental features.
All Movie Guide
The Lavender Hill Mob and The Ladykillers can almost serve as companion pieces to each other. Both are hilarious British caper comedies of the 1950s, but both also feature astonishingly different central performances from Alec Guinness. While in The Ladykillers Guinness is a fiendish crook whose criminality is evident from his first appearance, in The Lavender Hill Mob he is a mousy milquetoast named Holland, the unlikeliest of thieves who uses the trust that others place in him to set his plan into motion. Guinness' delightful performance as Holland earned him his first Oscar nomination, and he is supported by a fun cast that includes Stanley Holloway, Sidney James, and Alfie Bass. T.E.B. Clarke's Oscar-winning script ingeniously sets up the story by having Holland recount his tale after-the-fact, and Clarke's characters and story line possess an unpredictability that makes the film easily maintain interest throughout. More than 35 years later, director Charles Crichton made another caper comedy, A Fish Called Wanda, that recaptured the carefree sensibility that makes The Lavender Hill Mob so enjoyable. It is also worth noting that a very young Audrey Hepburn has a brief appearance in the opening scene and veteran character actor Peter Bull can be quickly spotted in an unbilled cameo.

Product Details

Release Date:
Original Release:
Starz / Anchor Bay
Region Code:
[Dolby Digital Mono]

Special Features

Closed Caption; Full frame presentation; Theatrical trailer; Alec Guinness bio; English and French language track

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Alec Guinness Henry Holland
Stanley Holloway Alfred Pendelbury
Sidney James Lackery Wood
Alfie Bass Shorty Fisher
Marjorie Fielding Mrs. Chalk
Ronald Adam Turner
Edie Martin Miss Evesham
John Salew Parkin
Arthur Hambling Wallis
Gibb McLaughlin Godwin
John Gregson Farrow
Clive Morton Station Sergeant
Frederick Piper Cafe Owner
Peter Bull Joe the Gab
Patric Doonan Craggs
Marie Burke Senora Gallardo
Audrey Hepburn Chiquita
Michael Trubshawe Ambassador
Jacques Cey Actor
Archie Duncan Actor
Frank Forsyth Actor
Fred Griffiths Actor
Charles Lamb Actor
Arthur Mullard Actor
Marie Ney Actor
Robert Shaw Actor
Sydney Tafler Clayton
John Warwick Actor
Joe Clark Actor
William Fox Gregory
Ann Heffernan Kiosk Girl
Eugene Deckers Customs Official
Paul Demel Customs Official
Cyril Chamberlain Commander
Tony Quinn Deputy Commander
Christopher Hewett Inspector Talbot
Meredith Edwards P.C. Williams
Patrick Barr Inspector
David Davies City Policeman
Jacques Brunius Official
Andrea Malandrinos Customs Official
Moultrie Kelsall Detective Superintendant

Technical Credits
Charles Crichton Director
Georges Auric Score Composer
Michael Balcon Producer
T.E.B. Clarke Screenwriter
Stephen Dalby Sound/Sound Designer
Seth Holt Editor
Ernest Irving Musical Direction/Supervision
William Kellner Art Director
Anthony Mendleson Costumes/Costume Designer
Syd Pearson Special Effects
Norman Priggen Asst. Director
Jeff Seaholme Camera Operator
Douglas Slocombe Cinematographer
Ernest Taylor Makeup
Michael Truman Associate Producer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Program Start/Main Titles [2:00]
2. Big Spender [2:28]
3. Guardian of the Gold [3:28]
4. Lavender Hill Hotel [3:19]
5. Pendlebury's Profession [5:22]
6. Now or Never [2:47]
7. Unique Recruitment [4:57]
8. A Gilt-Edged Proposition [3:57]
9. A Beautiful Day for a Heist [4:51]
10. "They Got Mr. Pendlebury!" [4:31]
11. Case Dismissed [4:41]
12. Hero's Welcome [3:32]
13. Police Manhunt [4:36]
14. The Lavender Hill Mob [2:00]
15. "The World Is Ours" [5:01]
16. Holland and Pendlebury Miss the Boat [3:25]
17. Under Suspicion [3:05]
18. Stubborn Little Girl [3:15]
19. Metropolitan Police Training School [5:28]
20. Stolen Car [4:12]
21. Old McDonald Had a Farm [2:59]
22. End Credits [1:04]


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