School for Scoundrels

School for Scoundrels

Director: Robert Hamer

Cast: Ian Carmichael, Terry-Thomas, Alastair Sim

     
 

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In the British farce School for Scoundrels, Ian Carmichael plays a naïve young loser, Henry Palfrey, who is anxious to get ahead in the world. He enrolls in a "school" that specializes in teaching one-upmanship -- the slogan is "How to win without actually cheating." Through fair means and foul, Henry learns how to come out top dog in any situation, with such

Overview

In the British farce School for Scoundrels, Ian Carmichael plays a naïve young loser, Henry Palfrey, who is anxious to get ahead in the world. He enrolls in a "school" that specializes in teaching one-upmanship -- the slogan is "How to win without actually cheating." Through fair means and foul, Henry learns how to come out top dog in any situation, with such experts as (the real-life) Stephen Potter (Alastair Sim) as his guide. A perceptive series of comic blackouts exposing the essential hypocrisy in all walks of life, School for Scoundrels was based on the book by Potter.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
School for Scoundrels is a minor comic gem, much better appreciated in its native England than elsewhere, but greatly deserving of wider exposure. Scoundrels is a rare creation, one that manages to drip with cynicism and irony yet retain a certain amount of heart. Much of the credit goes to the deftly fashioned Peter Ustinov-Frank Tarloff screenplay, which utilizes a strong support structure on which to hang a number of beautifully realized comic episodes. The authors set every situation and gag up clearly and precisely, but without going overboard into the tiring and predictable. They clearly understand the importance of laughs brought about by character rather than just gags -- hence their ability to get big laughs from the phrase "hard cheese." Equal credit for those laughs must go to Terry-Thomas' delivery, which brings us to the marvelous cast. Terry-Thomas has never played his lecherous cad character with such flair, and Alastair Sim plays up his impishness, his drollery, and that slightly sinister quality of his to very good effect. In most cases, they'd wipe the screen with whoever was stuck playing Palfrey, but fortunately Ian Carmichael manages to hold his ground and then some, adding the warmth and humanity that the film requires to keep on track. Scoundrels has some flaws, including direction that is satisfactory but little more, but on the whole, it is a treat.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/27/2007
UPC:
0012236210788
Original Release:
1960
Rating:
NR
Source:
Lions Gate
Region Code:
1
Time:
1:34:00

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Ian Carmichael Henry Palfrey
Terry-Thomas Raymond Delauney
Alastair Sim Stephen Potter
Janette Scott April Smith
Dennis Price Dunstan Dorchester
Peter Jones Dudley Dorchester
Edward Chapman Gloatbridge
John Le Mesurier Headwaiter
Irene Handl Mrs. Stringer
Kynaston Reeves General
Hattie Jacques First Instructress
Hugh Paddick Instructor
Barbara Roscoe Instructor
Gerald Campion Proudfoot
Monty Landis Fleetsnod
Jeremy Lloyd Dingle
Charles Lamb Carpenter
Anita Bolster Maid

Technical Credits
Robert Hamer Director
John Addison Score Composer,Screenwriter
Eric Aylott Makeup
Richard Best Editor
George Blackwell Special Effects
Erwin Hillier Cinematographer
Patricia Moyes Screenwriter
Douglas Rankin Producer
Peter Ustinov Screenwriter
Terence Verity Art Director

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- School for Scoundrels
1. Opening Credits [5:41]
2. Mr. Potter's Office [7:16]
3. Date Night [9:31]
4. Car Dealership [8:10]
5. Tennis Club [6:26]
6. Recap [6:30]
7. Woo-manship [3:38]
8. Dealership Return [6:07]
9. House Cleaning [6:29]
10. Getting Even [8:25]
11. Rematch [7:48]
12. Graduation [6:42]
13. Henry's Flat [2:25]
14. Mrs. Stringer [4:49]
15. Jealousy [3:32]
16. End Credits [:53]

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