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Horse's Mouth
     

The Horse's Mouth

4.5 2
Director: Ronald Neame, Alec Guinness, Kay Walsh, Mike Morgan

Cast: Ronald Neame, Alec Guinness, Kay Walsh, Mike Morgan

 
Alec Guinness stars in director Ronald Neame's The Horse's Mouth. Criterion has done a respectable job at making sure this 1.66:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer is mostly clear and crisp. While there is some appearance of wear and tear in the image (including some grain and soft colors), overall, the black levels appear solid while the colors are well-saturated

Overview

Alec Guinness stars in director Ronald Neame's The Horse's Mouth. Criterion has done a respectable job at making sure this 1.66:1 anamorphic widescreen transfer is mostly clear and crisp. While there is some appearance of wear and tear in the image (including some grain and soft colors), overall, the black levels appear solid while the colors are well-saturated. The soundtrack is presented in Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono in English and is very mediocre. As with most 1.0 sound mixes, this one tends to be somewhat muffled at times. However, the bulk of this soundtrack is free and clear of most excessive hiss and distortion. Also included on this disc are English subtitles. The extra features on this disc are small but substantial -- included on The Horse's Mouth is a fascinating 19 minute interview with the director, a documentary short by D.A. Pennebaker titled Daybreak Express, which ran before The Horse's Mouth during its theatrical run in New York, a video interview with Pennebaker which runs before his short film, and a theatrical trailer for the film.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
The Horse's Mouth not only features a tour de force performance by Alec Guinness, but also showcases Guinness' Oscar-nominated screenplay, which takes the film beyond clichéd eccentric character study to a deeper level of examining an artist whose obsession has in many ways left him alone and ruined. Once again displaying his legendary ability to physically transform into his character, Guinness plays the aging artist Gulley Jimson as a man whose desperation to express his creativity has almost turned him into a social outcast. This is not the scenery-chewing, over-the-top performance that one would expect from such a character, but instead a subtle, heartbreaking and darkly comical exploration of the need for artistic expression. Kay Walsh and Renee Houston are also very good as the women in Gulley's life, both getting their moments to shine thanks to the fact that Guinness' central performance is not over-dominating. Director Ronald Neame makes excellent use of Sergei Prokofiev's "Lieutenant Kije" suite, and Arthur Ibbetson's color photography has a painterly feel to it. John Bratby's renditions of Gulley's paintings also work very well, reflecting Gulley's personality. In that tiny genre of films that explore the inner workings of the artist, The Horse's Mouth can proudly stand beside such other classics as Lust for Life and La Belle Noiseuse. Bob Mastrangelo

Product Details

Release Date:
06/04/2002
UPC:
0037429168721
Original Release:
1958
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Mono]
Time:
1:35:00
Sales rank:
25,297

Special Features

New high-definition digital transfer, supervised by director Ronald Neame and enhanced for widescreen televisions; 2001 video interview with Ronald Neame; D.A. Pennebaker's short documentary film "Daybreak Express," which opened the original New York theatrical run of "The Horse's Mouth," plus a video introduction by Pennebaker; Original theatrical trailer; English subtitles for the deaf and hearing impaired; Optimal image quality: RSDL dual-layer edition

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Alec Guinness Gully Jimson
Kay Walsh Coker
Mike Morgan Nosey
Renee Houston Sarah Monday
Robert Coote Sir William Beeder
Veronica Turleigh Lady Beeder
Reginald Beckwith Capt. Jones
Michael Gough Abel
Arthur Macrae Alabaster
Ernst Thesiger Hickson
Gillian Vaughan Lollie
Richard Caldicot Butler

Technical Credits
Ronald Neame Director,Producer
Bill Andrews Art Director,Set Decoration/Design
Colin M. Brewer Asst. Director
John Bryan Producer
Anne V. Coates Editor
Albert Fennell Executive Producer
Harold Fletcher Makeup
Alec Guinness Screenwriter
John Harris Camera Operator
Arthur Ibbetson Cinematographer
Kenneth V. Jones Score Composer
Muir Mathieson Musical Direction/Supervision

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Opening Credits [1:46]
2. "Bad Rubbish" [5:48]
3. Crank Calls [6:50]
4. "Don't Be an Artist" [4:19]
5. Mrs. Monday [6:24]
6. "Feel It With Your Eyes" [9:41]
7. Sir William & Lady Beeder [9:20]
8. Houseguests [10:25]
9. "A Crackpot Painting" [9:54]
10. "World of Color" [7:02]
11. The Tate Gallery [8:17]
12. The Last Judgement [6:44]
13. The Giraffe's Eye [5:43]
14. New Horizons [3:04]

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The Horse's Mouth 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best movies I have ever seen. Alec Guinness said in an interview that this was his favorite role. The screenplay, casting, and character development are superb. This movie is a clear demonstration that great movies do not depend on special effects or mindless violence. The movie tells a simple story of an ordinary man and the extraordinary experiences during this part of his life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago