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Classic Ealing comedy in which an embittered aristocrat sets out to murder the eight heirs that stand between him and succession to the family title. Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price) holds no love for the aristocratic family he counts as relations, the D'Ascoynes. The family cast his mother out when she decided to marry a 'commoner', Louis's father, and on her death refuse to allow her to be buried in the family vault. An outraged Louis vows revenge and begins working his way into the trust of the family to provide him with the opportunity to bump off the male heirs (all played by Alec Guinness) one by one. However, complications arise when he becomes romantically entangled with one of the widows of his victims, Edith D'Ascoyne (Valerie Hobson). Will Louis be able to stay the course and murder his way to a Dukedom?
Born on the small Greek island of Melos, Joseph Georgirenes became a monk on Mount Athos and was consecrated as Archbishop of Samos in 1666. Five years later he left his diocese and travelled to Europe, visiting Rome, Paris, London and Oxford. Scholars such as Antoine Galland in Paris and Thomas Smith in Oxford invited this Greek Orthodox priest to take part in their theological discussions. Until now, Georgirenes has been best known for having established the first Greek Orthodox church in London in Soho, and for publishing a detailed account of the condition and practices of the Orthodox church living under Ottoman rule. This booklet - A Description of the Present State of Samos, Nicaria, Patmos and Mount Athos - was published in London in 1677 and is republished here for the first time in England. Caught up in the Popish Plot, Georgirenes left England in 1682 and it was not known what happened to him. For the first time, however, this biography reveals the extraordinary further adventures of this much-travelled priest.
A collection of five classic Ealing comedies. 'Kind Hearts and Coronets' (1949) is a period comedy set in the early 20th century. Young Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price) vows to take revenge on his family, the D'Ascoynes, when he learns how they disinherited his mother. Working his way into their trust, Louis begins to bump off his distant relatives (all played by Alec Guinness) one by one, but complications set in when Edith D'Ascoyne (Valerie Hobson), the widow of his first victim, falls in love with him. In 'The Ladykillers' (1955), eccentric landlady Mrs Wilberforce (Katie Johnson) believes her new lodger Professor Marcus (Guinness) and his associates the Major (Cecil Parker), Louis (Herbert Lom), Harry (Peter Sellers) and One-Round (Danny Green) to be amateur musicians. They are in fact, however, the perpetrators of a bank heist, looking to whisk their ill-gotten gains out of London. All goes well until Mrs Wilberforce is persuaded by Marcus to claim his 'trunk' from the station; it is only then that the criminal genius's carefully laid plans begin to go awry. In 'The Man in The White Suit' (1951), Sidney Stratton (Guiness) is a laboratory cleaner in a textile factory who invents a material that will neither wear out nor become dirty. Initially hailed as a great discovery, Sidney's astonishing invention is suffocated by the management when they realise that if it never wears out, people will only ever have to purchase one suit of clothing. In 'Passport to Pimlico' (1949), an unexploded bomb goes off in Pimlico, uncovering documents which reveal that this part of London in fact belongs to Burgundy in France. An automonous state is set up in a spirit of optimism, but the petty squabbles of everyday life soon shatter the Utopian vision of a non-restrictive nation. Finally, in 'The Lavender Hill Mob' (1951), nobody would ever suspect gold bullion delivery man Henry Holland (Guinness) of anything other than total devotion to his job. However, with the aid of fellow lodger Pendlebury (Stanley Holloway), he gathers together a gang to carry out a heist, intending to smuggle the gold out of the country by melting it down into miniature models of the Eiffel Tower. All goes well until the consignment of models becomes muddled up with another, non-golden batch. Watch out for an early cameo by Audrey Hepburn.
Classic collection of the early films of Alec Guinness. In the classic Ealing comedy, 'Kind Hearts and Coronets' (1949), young Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price) vows to take revenge on his family, the D'Ascoynes, when he learns how they disinherited his mother. Working his way into their trust, Louis begins to bump off his distant relatives (all played by Alec Guinness) one by one, but complications set in when Edith D'Ascoyne (Valerie Hobson), the widow of his first victim, falls in love with him.
In 'Last Holiday' (1950), Guiness plays an agricultural salesman who finds out he has a short time to live. Taking a final holiday, he realises that he was actually a more interesting person than he allowed himself to be. In 'The Man In The White Suit' (1951), eccentric Sidney Stratton (Alec Guiness) is a laboratory cleaner in a textile factory, who invents a material that will neither wear out nor become dirty.
Initially hailed as a great discovery, Sidney's astonishing invention is suffocated by the management when they realise that if it never wears out, people will only ever have to purchase one suit of clothing. In 'The Captain's Paradise' (1953), Guinness stars as Mediterranean ferryboat Captain Henry St. James, who believes in the notion of 'a girl in every port'.
For Henry has a wife on both sides of the water. There is Maude (Celia Johnson) in Gibraltar and Nita (Yvonne DeCarlo) in Tangiers. Everything is perfect as long as neither woman decides to visit the other port.
In 'Barnacle Bill' (1957), Guiness plays retired Navy Captain Ambrose, who buys a decrepit amusement pier in 'Sandcastle-On-Sea' planning to turn it into a going concern. But when the local council object to the idea, planning to close the pier down, Ambrose has to use some lateral thinking to save the day.
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