Alec Guinness: In The Frame

  |  Buy to Own: 29/10/2007
  |  685 min
Rated TBC by the BBFC


Six films starring Alec Guinness. 'Our Man in Havana' (1959) is a spy spoof based on the novel by Graham Greene. Guinness stars as Jim Wormold, an English expatriate who sells vacuum cleaners in Havana. His life is irrevocably changed as he is recruited by Hawthorne (Noel Coward), and pressed into service as an operative of MI6, which he reluctantly agrees to so he can earn extra money for his 17-year-old daughter. 'HMS The Defiant' (1962) is a naval drama set aboard a British warship during the years of the Napoleonic Wars. Captain Crawford (Guinness) is respected by his crew as a fair and just leader of men, but his second-in-command, Lt. Scott-Padget (Dirk Bogarde), is known as a bitter sadist who likes to see the sailors suffer. When Scott-Padget is killed in a mutiny, Crawford knows that he must punish the men responsible, but when they acquit themselves well during combat, he begins to have second thoughts, and soon finds himself in the midst of a full-blown crisis of conscience. 'Cromwell' (1970) is a period drama set during the English Civil War of the 17th century, seen through the eyes of Roundhead leader Oliver Cromwell (Richard Harris). Cromwell had planned to take his family to the New World (North America), when a succession of religious and political problems draw him into the fold which resulted in the British Civil War. David Lean's classic British war film 'The Bridge on the River Kwai' (1957) is based on the novel by Pierre Boulle. A group of British POWs are forced to build a bridge in Burma for the Japanese. Led by Colonel Nicholson (Guinness) they not only build the bridge but organise the whole building programme and are proud of the final result. However, unbeknownst to the POWs, a British commando team has been given a mission to destroy it. 'Murder By Death' (1976) is a spoof 'whodunnit' featuring a host of stars playing variations on well-known fictional detectives. Reclusive millionaire Lionel Twain (Truman Capote) invites a selection of famous sleuths to his mansion and subjects them all to a number of perilous and puzzling scenarios. The guests include Chinese crimefighter Sidney Wang (Peter Sellers), hardboiled detective Sam Diamond (Peter Falk), high society sleuths Dick and Dora Charleston (David Niven and Maggie Smith), and for Agatha Christie fans, the Marple and Poirot clones Jessica Marbles (Elsa Lanchester) and Milo Perrier (James Coco). 'The Prisoner' (1955) is a modern classic based on a true story. Guinness stars as a Cardinal prisoner ordered to issue a false statement which will effectively end Catholicism in his country. Jack Hawkins is the interrogator who almost convinces The Cardinal that his statement will have a beneficial effect.