7.5/10
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31 user 15 critic

Last Holiday (1950)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 13 November 1950 (USA)
When a lonely, unappreciated farm equipment salesman discovers he has only a few weeks to live, he withdraws his savings for a final holiday at a "posh" resort.

Director:

Henry Cass

Writer:

J.B. Priestley (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alec Guinness ... George Bird
Beatrice Campbell Beatrice Campbell ... Sheila Rockingham
Kay Walsh ... Mrs. Poole
Grégoire Aslan ... Gambini (as Coco Aslan)
Jean Colin ... Daisy Clarence
Muriel George ... Lady Oswington
Brian Worth Brian Worth ... Derek Rockingham
Esma Cannon ... Miss Fox
Bernard Lee ... Inspector Wilton
Sidney James ... Joe Clarence
Campbell Cotts Campbell Cotts ... Bellinghurst
Moultrie Kelsall ... Sir Robert Kyle
Eveline Kirkwood-Hackett Eveline Kirkwood-Hackett ... Miss Hatfield (as Mme. Kirkwood-Hackett)
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Chalfont
Eric Maturin Eric Maturin ... Wrexham
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Storyline

George Bird's rather lonely, anonymous existence as an underappreciated seller of farm machinery is jarred when his physician informs him that he is suffering from the rare malady Lampington's Disease, and only has a few weeks to live. Believing he has nothing to lose, Bird resigns his position and withdraws his modest life savings in order to spend his remaining time in a "posh" seaside resort. There he keeps his own counsel about his condition and meets people who live in a world he could never have imagined existed. Incredibly, he finds personal and professional opportunities now open to him that that he never dreamed would be his, but unfortunately, he is no position to take advantage of them, until fate lends a hand. Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Guinness...The Great Lover! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 November 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Vacances sur ordonnance See more »

Filming Locations:

Torquay, Devon, England, UK See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Remade in 2006 with Queen Latifah in the title role. See more »

Quotes

Bellinghurst: I want some more information from you Mr Bird - tomorrow perhaps. Don't run away or drop dead, will you?
See more »

Connections

Remade as Last Holiday (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

The Beggar's Theme
(uncredited)
Composed by Francis Chagrin
[played on violin by busker]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Thoughtful Tale of Irony
26 May 2014 | by krocheavSee all my reviews

What makes a film good? In this case it's the writing that first draws you in. Writer and co-producer J.B.Priestly (The Old Dark House '32 ~ An Inspector Calls '54) has a way with words that compels the viewer to want to know more about his characters. With wit and a sense of mystery, he surrounds us with multi layered groups of people that are mostly drawn together by chance. In 'Last Holiday' the cruel hand of fate brings us face to face with ultimate irony.

It's filled with marvelous situations, at first upsetting, then wryly funny, leading to an unexpected ending that invites us to examine the way we not only relate to others, but how we treat them. Priestly is examining the bias that all too often accompanies class consciousness. The cast is exquisitely diverse, everyone from bit players to mains, deliver sterling performances under direction from Henry Cass (Glass Mountain '49). Welsh born Cinematographer: Ray Elton (Quartet '48) with his strong grounding in documentaries, brings a realistic look to the fine work of Scottish art director Duncan Sutherland (San Demetrio London '43 ~ The Human Monster '49).

I found the music score by Romanian born composer Francis Chargrin surprisingly melodic for a 50s film of this type. Its thoughtful main theme is equally likable as his later 'The Beachomber' in '54. You might also remember Chargrin for his 'Colditz Story' '55, and 'Grey Friars Bobby' '61. Those who enjoy the always professional performances of Alec Guinness will enjoy his generally dour role in this off-beat mini classic.

My viewing was hindered by Australian TV broadcaster Gem's, persistence in supering 'pop-up' adds for up-coming shows, and their ridiculous LARGE lolly 'Pink' station ID. At least this time they screened the full film after inadvertently leaving out a reel in an earlier screening! Sure wish this broadcaster would treat their viewers, and the films they run with far more respect!


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