The Lady Killers (StudioCanal Collection) [Blu-ray] (Bilingual) [Import]
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""Called """"one of the greatest comedies ever made by ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, THE LADYKILLERS showcases Alec Guinness in one of his most unforgettable performances as Professor Marcus, mastermind of a gang of vicious bank robbers who rent a room from an elderly widow. But when the dear old woman begins to meddle in their """"perfect crime, the crooks decide that she might pose the biggest threat of all. Co-starring Peter Sellers in his first major screen role, THE LADYKILLERS remains one of the most ruthlessly black comedies of all time.""
In English comedy at its blackest (and funniest) pitch, this droll 1955 farce finds Alec Guinness in one of his typically deft, chameleon turns as would-be criminal mastermind Professor Marcus. When Marcus's grand plan to pull off a train heist leads him to a strategically situated house occupied by the genteel Mrs. Wilberforce (Katie Johnson), the ensuing masquerade triggers a mordant, even macabre comedy of manners. With Marcus and his rough-hewn cronies (Herbert Lom, Peter Sellers, and Danny Green) posing as a string quartet, and the dear lady's demise seen as the means to their larcenous end, the gang's sinister machinations are consistently, if unwittingly, foiled by the good-hearted, resourceful widow. --Sam Sutherland --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Some awfully strange and shifty characters rent a couple of rooms from what appears to be a ditzy old lady (Katie Johnson.) They pretend to be musicians each carrying their own instrument but when the chips are down the estimate that actually plays is the Victrola. Why are they there? We soon find out that they plan the perfect robbery and intend to include the innocent ditzy old lady as their patsy.
Of course, everything goes swimmingly well. Well maybe not that well as the robbery does not go as smoothly as planned and you think that some of the robbers will get apoplexy watching how close the money comes to being repossessed. Soon they realize that the ditzy old lady is not so ditzy and suspects their motives. Hence the title of the movie that could have been a play, "The Lady Killers."
Will they succeed?
Or will fait in the form of greed take a hand?
This drôle 1955 black comedy is from the Ealing Studio. The heist is carried out despite the old lady's constant, well-intentioned, and funny interruptions, she gradually realizes her part in it, and justice prevails with lots of giggles. Guiness, sporting a large overbite and flyaway hair, is charmingly devious as the gang leader, but it is the inimitable Katie Johnson who steals the show. She's so likable and convincing, completely inhabiting the role of the befuddled, sweet landlady who is blithely unaware she is surrounded by criminals.
Highly recommended for those who enjoy classic British comedy.
The Ladykillers is a fantastic dark comedy; you might be shocked at how dark it can get, particularly when the frustrated criminals contemplate killing the old woman, an act made difficult by her age and general kindliness. The ending will have you hooting in delight and surprise. Really a great movie for those who savor irony and subtle humor, and who wish to see Alec Guinness in one of his greatest comedic roles.
The recent remake of the film is not worth watching. Though Tom Hanks is generally a fine actor, he does not hit the right note as the eccentric, scheming criminal; in fact, the entire remake doesn't capture the spirit of the original.
This film is one of those great dark comedies,that could only ever be made in Britain.An American version would fail outright. Alec Guiness is in top form as a clever conman,and his gang of off beat cronies. Alec Guiness takes up residence at the home of the kindly Mrs.Wilberforce,convincing her he's a director of a string quartet. ( a.k.a.his gang.).That's the basic premise. What happens from there is evil comedy! Is Mrs.Wilberforce a criminal accomplice or an unassuming one-woman police force? Eventually,she will have to be dealt with....but who's going to kill the sweet old lady? There,is where the real problems begin!
It's great fun,but be aware,it's a very meticulous comedy. That is to say it's not a "wacky" sort of comedy.It's a thinking sort of comedy,it's more like a Charles Addams cartoon humour.If you are a Peter Sellers fan,you may be a little disappointed,it's his first film,and he's not given a lot of lines as the teddy-boy thug.( But he does have a few silly moments.). This might also be Peter Seller's first team up with future Pink Panther co-star Herbert Lom (Inspector Dreyfus ),whom is the scariest member of "the gang".
Over all a brilliant Alec Guiness vehicle,and wonderful support performances all around.
For me, the most memorable performance in this film is provided by Katie Johnson as Mrs. Louisa Alexandra Wilberforce who rents a flat to Professor Marcus (Guinness) and his companions. The plot such as it is involves their theft of 60,000 pounds and subsequent efforts to remove it from a locker they have rented to store it temporarily. For about half of this film, brilliantly directed by Alexander Mackendrick (who also directed Guinness in The Man in the White Suit, 1951), Mrs. Wilberforce believes that Marcus and his friends are honest citizens and amateur musicians. When she learns that they are thieves, her first concern is not for her personal safety (which is never in doubt, anyway) but to return "the lolly" to its rightful owners. Complications include her elderly friends who appreciatively swarm around the Marcus group during a hilarious afternoon tea party. One development of special interest to me is the fact that, except for the psychopath Louis Harvey (Lom), the thieves do not want Mrs. Wilberforce harmed in any way and begin to feel protective toward her. This proves to be significant as the plot proceeds gracefully to a conclusion I did not anticipate.
Given the number of deaths which occur in this film, it seems inappropriate to describe it as "charming" and "delightful" but it is nonetheless.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
the remake comes nowhere close to this original version. this is the one... buy it.Published 5 months ago by re1000
THE LADYKILLERS [1955/2015] [60th Anniversary Collector's Edition] [Blu-ray] [UK Release] The Most Hilarious Gangster Film Ever Made! Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
It's a great movie - one of the best - and you can watch it repeatedly. But this DVD does not play in North America. Read morePublished 12 months ago by F. Koustrup
So funny, the little old lady in this movie is just too cute and the ending is very unexpected.Published on July 23 2014 by Joeen Melchiorre
A gang of bank robbers pull off the perfect heist, only to be foiled by a little old lady. Not wanting to go to prison, they decide to kill her, but can these hardened criminals do... Read morePublished on Aug. 17 2007 by Nolene-Patricia Dougan
Excellent movie, the British knew how to do it right. I love the Coen Brothers, but their remake of this comedy was lame, lame, lame!Published on Sept. 12 2004 by Kilgore
This is GREAT comedy, a la British! The plot is a gem, and the acting simply superb. To see Guiness, Sellers and Lom at the top of their form; and the "little old lady"... Read morePublished on June 21 2004 by Juan Oliver Colom
This movie is not in the least bit funny. I found it excruciatingly tedious and boring to watch. It ranks as one of the worst films I have ever seen. Read morePublished on March 30 2004
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