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Hobsons Choice

4.9 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Charles Laughton, John Mills, Brenda de Banzie, Daphne Anderson, Prunella Scales
  • Directors: David Lean
  • Writers: David Lean, Norman Spencer, Harold Brighouse, Wynyard Browne
  • Producers: David Lean, Norman Spencer
  • Format: Black & White, DVD-Video, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Criterion
  • Release Date: Feb. 17 2009
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B001LMU1A0
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #21,934 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Hobson's Choice (The Criterion Collection)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I had never seen or heard of this low-key delightful treasure until I came across it in VHS in our local library almost 20 years ago. Charles Laughton is superb as a widower with three daughters. The story is set in the north of England before the first World War. Unmarried women past a certain age were to be pitied, drinking (especially to excess) was shameful, girls expected their fathers to increase their chances of marriage by providing large dowries. The oldest daughter, Maggie, splendidly played by Brenda de Banzie (you'll remember her from Hitchcock's Man Who Knew Too Much), is clever but plain and "on the shelf." It is clear from the beginning that she runs the household and the family shoe shop while her father spends most of his time in the pub and her sisters (Daphne Anderson and a very young Prunella Scales - who was John Cleese's wife in Fawlty Towers) are keener on flirting with their beaus. Maggie decides she has had enough slavery and sets her sights on marrying Willie Mossop (John Mills), her father's boot maker. The film is the story of how Maggie gets her wish, while still looking after the future of her father, her sisters and of the family business. Beautifully scripted and acted, it is full of gentle humour and has the best before-and-after-the-wedding-night scenes I have ever seen. Fans of British films will recognize many well-know actors in supporting roles. I bought my own copy in VHS years ago, which became a favourite in my family and with everyone I've lent it to. Thank goodness it is finally out on DVD. My tape was quite worn out!
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Format: Blu-ray
HOBSON’S CHOICE [1954] [60th Anniversary Edition] [Blu-ray] [UK Release] The Critics’ Choice! A Mirthful Comedy . . . Looks Like A Sure Thing!

Henry Horatio Hobson [Academy Award® Winner Charles Laughton] is the owner of a well-established boot shop in nineteenth century Salford, Lancashire and the father of three daughters. The oldest, Maggie Hobson [Brenda de Banzie], shoulders both home and business responsibilities while Henry Horatio Hobson whiles the time away at the local pub. The younger sisters are both being courted by neighbours, but Hobson refuses to give the couples settlements. Maggie Hobson becomes tired of his oafish behaviour and decides to take matters into her hands by seeking a husband.

Much to the hilarity and consternation of her father, aged spinster Maggie Hobson sets her sights on shy Will Mossop [Sir John Mills], Hobson’s master boot-maker. Will Mossop is at first stunned by the suggestion, but eventually agrees to Maggie Hobson’s authoritative persuasion, and together they set up a rival boot shop. A timeless masterpiece that marked a temporary return to Sir Davis Lean's period adaptations of Charles Dickens “Great Expectations” and “Oliver Twist.” The film went on to win multiple awards. This film has been digitally restored to its former glory.

FILM FACT: Awards: 1954 BAFTA® Awards: Won: Best British Film. 1954 4th Berlin International Film Festival: Won: Golden Bear Award. Robert Donat was originally cast in the role of Will Mossop, but had to pull out due to his asthma.
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By Kona TOP 500 REVIEWER on July 15 2011
Format: DVD
The story opens in Victorian times, where Henry Hobson (Charles Laughton) is a wealthy boot shop owner, despite being a selfish blowhard and a drunkard who spends his days and nights at the pub. When he tells his smart, spinster daughter (Brenda de Banzie) that she's too old to marry, she takes matters into her own hands and marries an unlikely candidate (John Mills).

This is an absolutely delightful movie with endearing characters, a funny plot, and witty dialogue and it was directed by David Lean. Laughton is very good as the blustering father, but Brenda de Banzie steals the show. She plays a strong-willed, ahead-of-her-time woman who knows what she wants and goes after it, despite the social pressures of the day. John Mills gives a sweet performance as the oafish boot hand who grows into a confident and loving businessman.

The recreation of a Victorian town is complete and the costumes are lovely. This is an old-fashioned and thoroughly enjoyable movie that will leave you wondering why they don't make 'em like this anymore. Highly recommended.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
If you're a fan of this era of movies and actors(actresses), this is one of the best. Even my young son (19 years old) said it held his attention and was "not as bad as I thought it would be" . This is high praise coming from him. As for myself,I thought it was great and highly recommend it.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I first saw this movie about 70 years ago in Southampton, England with my wife who was supporting me as a Ph.D. student.
It was a double feature with The Blue Lamp - the cinema was good value then!
We both loved Hobson's Choice then & have enjoyed it twice over the years when it showed on T.V. (T.V. Ontario, probably)
Now we can see it when we like! Laughton, John Mills, Brenda de Banzie - all great plus a great British supporting cast - some great cameos.
If you don't know the movie I suggest you check out IMDB & read what more literate critics than I have to offer.
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