Thursday, August 13, 2015

Choice Material

Since we were in the mood to watch some Charles Laughton, we finally caught up with Hobson's Choice (1954). Not sure why we hadn't watched before, it's a real classic - not just an old movie.

It's about a cobbler who lives, works, and drinks in a suburb of Manchester in the 19th century. His wife has died and left him to care for three daughters. Now that they are grown, and considering his fondness for the pub, they are mainly taking care of him. He tyrannizes them, and in that day and age, they have to take it. The younger two he will marry off, if he doesn't have to provide a dowry. The eldest he calls an old maid, because he wants to keep her as his servant.

By the way, the youngest daughter is played by Prunella Scales, later Sybil Fawltey.

It may not surprise you to learn that the worm turns.

This is a lot of fun, full of classic turns - John Mills the meek cobbler, Brenda de Banzie determined not to die an old maid, Laughton drunk, and all of his cronies in the pub. The movie was made on location, giving it a well-worn look, appropriate to a movie made from a play written in 1915. Still fine today.

1 comment:

Mythical Monkey said...

I saw this a couple of years ago for the first time and loved it. For a movie with its pedigree, you'd think it'd get more overt love but nobody seems to talk about it much. Great movie, very underappreciated.