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  1. #21
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    Yeah, but strangely it sounds like "bars"...

    Perhaps they had swimming pools in the bars in those days?)

  2. #22
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alex_thorn
    Yeah, but strangely it sounds like "bars"...

    Perhaps they had swimming pools in the bars in those days?)


    The municipal baths weren't originally swimming pools, but somewhere you could go to wash when you didn't have a bath at home. Swimming pools and Turkish baths were often added to bathhouses later.



    Steve

  3. #23
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    Quite interesting that.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Country: UK jonpsych's Avatar
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    The reference to a silken rope is that Lords were hanged with a rope made of silk, rather than the normal hemp rope which us commoners would have been dispatched with. hence, after using a silken rope he does not want to go back to hemp. Hope this helps



    Jonpsych

  5. #25
    Senior Member Country: Scotland julian_craster's Avatar
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    Must-have movies: Kind Hearts and Coronets

    Daily Telegraph

    09/02/2007



    Sheila Johnston reviews a classic



    As dark, hard and brilliant as a Victorian choker of funereal jet, Kind Hearts and Coronets is one of the first great post-war Ealing comedies, and surely the cleverest and cruellest of them all. Set c. 1900, it follows the mission of Louis Mazzini, the black sheep of the aristocratic D'Ascoyne dynasty, to extinguish all the relatives standing in line between himself and the family title.





    His mother, as he explains in the film's sardonic voiceover, was shunned when she ran off with a dashing, penniless and, above all, foreign Italian tenor, and this is his revenge. As Mazzini invents cunning strategies to ingratiate himself with his victims, and even more ingenious ways of killing them, we're offered a crash course in murder, English style. Accompanied by the divine strains of Mozart's Don Giovanni, his misdeeds are always executed according to perfect social etiquette.



    Kind Hearts and Coronets – the title comes from a poem by Alfred Lord Tennyson – is famed for the casting of Alec Guinness as no fewer than eight members of the arrogant (and very likely inbred) D'Ascoyne tribe; much of the fun lies in spotting his various incarnations and admiring his chameleon skill.



    The performance that most impresses, though, is Dennis Price's saturnine Mazzini, half suave Latin Lothario, half consummate English snob.



    One of the great lost talents of the British cinema, Robert Hamer – the director and co-writer – made a handful of movies before dying of alcoholism in 1963, aged 52. Too much of a maverick for the post-war Establishment, he declared his intention here to make a thoroughly amoral film, and in that he has certainly succeeded.

    Modern audiences will relish its cynicism, its robust attack on the British class system (the forelock-tugging hangman, thrilled to be despatching a Duke, is a special delight) and its outrageous open ending; a neater, cautionary message, warning that crime never pays, was used for the American version.

    Most delicious of all are the scenes between Mazzini and his winsomely vicious childhood sweetheart (Joan Greenwood), erotic duels dripping with honey and venom.

  6. #26
    Senior Member Country: United States
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    This is just one more candidate for that CGI VERSUS STORY debate on another thread.

  7. #27
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    I can't think of anywhere that CGI would be useful in 'Kind Hearts and Coronets', other than helping Alec Guiness in his multiple roles.



    Personally I think it's a toss-up as to whether 'Kind Hearts and Coronets', 'Withnail and I' or 'Get Carter' is the best British movie, but I tend to lean towards this one; it's just brilliantly done from start to end, even the small parts like the hangman are great.



    Another reason I love it is because it's the only U-rated serial killer movie I can think of!

  8. #28
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    Miles Malleson, as the hangman, is impeccable - and SO English. Even in death we are ruled by class ; how does one address/hang a Peer of the Realm ? Marvellous stuff !



    SMUDGE

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by smudge
    Miles Malleson, as the hangman, is impeccable - and SO English. Even in death we are ruled by class ; how does one address/hang a Peer of the Realm ? Marvellous stuff !



    SMUDGE
    I think I've read where Peter Sellers was in awe of Alec Guiness and as a genuis himself, must have been even more encouraged to follow the path that he did.



    Dennis Price - well what can you say? Flawless actor in KHAC, what a pity he degenerated towards the end of his career due to the demon drink, etc.

  10. #30
    Administrator Country: Wales Steve Crook's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    I think I've read where Peter Sellers was in awe of Alec Guiness and as a genuis himself, must have been even more encouraged to follow the path that he did.



    Dennis Price - well what can you say? Flawless actor in KHAC, what a pity he degenerated towards the end of his career due to the demon drink, etc.
    Dennis drank a lot throughout his career. It never really affected his performance or his professionalism much and that certainly wasn't why his career degenerated.

    It was more due to his problems with the tax man.



    When he was a high earner he never put any aside for the tax. When his earnings began to dry up he got hit with a huge tax bill. That led to him becoming a semi-recluse, living on the Channel Islands and also to his taking just about any job going, even the really bad ones.



    Steve

  11. #31
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    I know there have constantly been rumours of remakes of KHAC which thankfully have come to nothing.

    A few years ago (maybe around 1998) it was adapted for stage at Chichester Theatre and featured Colin Baker and Robert Powell and it underlined that this is indeed a film - in fact the opening scene in the play was the opening scene of the film shown on a TV on stage (which was probably only visible to the front 2 rows).



    The last rumour was Jim Carrey in the Alec Guinness part - but hopefully that will be the last we hear of it.

  12. #32
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    While I have an abysmally low opinion of a lot of Jim Carrey's work, the arrogance of filmmakers who volunteer for remakes always manages to dig their reputation even lower.

  13. #33
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    As a matter of interest,the last film of the great Robert hamer was Schhol for Scoundrels.Due to his alchoholism he was replaced half way through by Cyril Frankel.A remake of this film is now being advertised at my local multiplex.I am going to take the plunge and see it

  14. #34
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    . alec guinness and dennis price.probably the latters best movie.it made murder not only acceptable but extremely funny!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. #35
    Senior Member Country: UK Windthrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Crook
    Dennis drank a lot throughout his career. It never really affected his performance or his professionalism much and that certainly wasn't why his career degenerated.

    It was more due to his problems with the tax man.

    When he was a high earner he never put any aside for the tax. When his earnings began to dry up he got hit with a huge tax bill. That led to him becoming a semi-recluse, living on the Channel Islands and also to his taking just about any job going, even the really bad ones.

    Steve
    I think the British Cinema didn't quite know what to do with Price because he was at his peak when the British stars were generally short, cheerful stiff-upper lip actors and Price's urbane, languid persona just didn't fir in for leading roles at that time.



    As for the decline in his career - yup the Jess Franco eurohorrors were a sign of desperation - two of his last films 'Pulp' & 'Theatre of Blood' used him well and are above average movies of style and wit.

  16. #36
    Senior Member Country: UK Windthrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by orpheum
    As a matter of interest,the last film of the great Robert hamer was Schhol for Scoundrels.Due to his alchoholism he was replaced half way through by Cyril Frankel.A remake of this film is now being advertised at my local multiplex.I am going to take the plunge and see it
    There was to have been a remake of KHAC in the eighties with Lionel Jeffries directing and, wait for it, Russ Abbot in the Guiness roles. Thank god it never happened.

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windthrop
    I think the British Cinema didn't quite know what to do with Price because he was at his peak when the British stars were generally short, cheerful stiff-upper lip actors and Price's urbane, languid persona just didn't fit in for leading roles at that time.
    Rex Harrison was doing rather well at the time and in rather similar roles, both before and after KHAC - St Martins Lane, Major Barbara, Blithe Spirit. Then he seems to have headed off to America, leaving the door open for Dennis I would have thought.

    I've not seen much of Rex's work but to my mind he only seemed to actually play anything other than urbane in Night Train to Munich.



    Nick

  18. #38
    Senior Member Country: UK Windthrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Dando
    Rex Harrison was doing rather well at the time and in rather similar roles, both before and after KHAC - St Martins Lane, Major Barbara, Blithe Spirit. Then he seems to have headed off to America, leaving the door open for Dennis I would have thought.

    I've not seen much of Rex's work but to my mind he only seemed to actually play anything other than urbane in Night Train to Munich.

    Nick
    Yes but Harrison didn't have his best role as a mass murderer (KHAC) or other homicidal roles (Holiday Camp) and was an established star while tall well-bred were having a good time in Britflicks - Stewart Granger, James Mason, Michael Wilding. By the late 40's the big guns were Trevor Howard, John Mills & Richard Todd. Tall and aristocratic looking Christopher Lee recounts that his height and appearance held him back at that time.



    Looking at Price's CV post KNAC the leading roles peter out pretty quickly and those few he got - 'Lord Byron' and 'Lady Godiva Rides Again' didn't do him much good.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windthrop
    There was to have been a remake of KHAC in the eighties...
    I can only thank the stars that financiers or someone with intelligence ended up nixing this with a "Why bother?" Or at least with a recognition that any other project would be more likely to have a better box-office impact...

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Windthrop
    There was to have been a remake of KHAC in the eighties with Lionel Jeffries directing and, wait for it, Russ Abbot in the Guiness roles. Thank god it never happened.
    I actually read that Dustin Hoffman was keen to reprise the Alec Guinness role/s.

    Ta Ta

    Marky B

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