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The Green Man / School for Scoundrels [DVD] [1956/1960]

Ian Carmichael , Terry-Thomas , Basil Dearden , Cyril Frankel    Universal, suitable for all   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Ian Carmichael, Terry-Thomas, Alastair Sim, George Cole, Janette Scott
  • Directors: Basil Dearden, Cyril Frankel, Hal E. Chester, Robert Day, Robert Hamer
  • Writers: Hal E. Chester, Frank Launder, Patricia Moyes
  • Format: PAL, Full Screen, Black & White, Mono
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Warner
  • DVD Release Date: 14 April 2003
  • Run Time: 166 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008IARP
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 39,824 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The Green Man and School for Scoundrels are gems of both British comedy and the great Alastair Sim treasury. The Green Man is a charming film that carries a wickedly subversive streak of black humour squarely on the back of Alastair Sim's disgruntled criminal mastermind. Planning to assassinate a windbag MP, his dastardly plot is embroiled in a comedy of errors when George Cole's vacuum cleaning demonstration turns up a corpse in the piano at Sim's Windyridge cottage. Teaming up with the long-legged neighbour Cole tracks down the bomb to a secret hideaway for the MP--a pub called the Green Man. This is the sort of masterful comedy that deftly gets away with confusing the audience, who are never sure whose side they should be cheering.

In School for Scoundrels wimpy Ian Carmichael wants to impress girls and get one over on all-round show-off and cad Terry Thomas (playing gloriously to type). Discovering Alastair Sim's unorthodox school Carmichael happily enrols and learns the quaint tricks of the day for securing the admiration of a fair lady. Ultimately as a star pupil he teaches the Master a thing or two about true love when everything turns out just fine in the end. The three central performances are brilliantly realised, particularly the role reversal between Carmichael and Thomas. Try playing a tennis match after a viewing without calling "hard cheese". --Paul Tonks

Product Description

An Alistair Sim/Terry-Thomas double bill. In 'School for Scoundrels' Henry Palfrey (Ian Carmichael) is one of life's losers. Despised and disregarded at work, his prospective girlfriend April (Janette Scott) is whisked from under his nose by charming bounder Raymond Delauney (Terry-Thomas). In desperation, Henry enrols at Stephen Potter's (Alastair Sim) College of Lifemanship, where he gradually learns how to get one up on the other fellow. Whilst in 'The Green Man' a seemingly mild-mannered watchmaker Hawkins (Sim) is in fact a skilled assassin. His latest target is leading politician Sir Gregory Upshot (Raymond Huntley), who is due to stay the weekend at the Green Man hotel. However, Hawkins' well-planned attempts to remove Sir Gregory permanently from public life are frustrated by well-meaning vacuum cleaner salesman William Blake (George Cole).

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
71 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A British classic 20 July 2007
This is a marvellous black comedy that holds up to repeated viewings. Starring the great Alistair Sim but also featuring George Cole, Terry Thomas, Dora Bryan and a few other faces you will probably recognise. Sim plays Hawkins a clock-maker by trade but really a freelance assassin. Hawkins wants to kill, or is paid to kill, a pompous and boring man Sir Gregory Upshoot who is having a naughty weekend away at the Green Man.

Things go wrong right from the start. George Cole is a vacuum cleaner salesman who turns up unexpectedly resulting in series of brilliant scenes before the visit to the Green Man. You can tell when watching this that it was based on a play, but this doesn't detract from the clever script and high class performances. Perhaps best of all is the chess game that Hawkins plays with a local Policeman. As Hawkins, Alistair Sim is as always the master of telling you everything from a little contortion of his face, and the chess game scenes are the highlight for me.

Its also a chance to look back to a different age. There are a number of scenes (maybe shot in Surrey or somewhere like that) flmed outside a lovely detached house and the road is empty. Not a car to be seen, and when one does pull up it seems very odd, but in those days cars were comparitively rare.

This used to available as a double bill with School for Scoundrels (not the recent remake!). Now that was some double bill. However the film is worthy of an independent release. Buy now before it gets deleted again.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful fun 5 May 2003
The Green Man and School For Scoundrels are two of Alaistair Sim's greatest comedy efforts.
In the Green Man we see Sim as an assassin who is chased across England (by a very young George Cole) while attempting to kill his next victim.
In the School for Scoundrels we get a lively comedy starring Ian Carmichael and Terry Thomas. Sim's plays the professor of the school for rougues (ie Stephen Potts) teaching Carmichael how to take revenge on his nemesis by "winning without actually cheating" and to win the girl of his dreams. Based on the Books by the real Stephen Potter (Gamesmanship and Lifemanship) there is a real story and a lot of fun.
"Hard Cheese" for anyone who misses the opportunity to watch this set.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic comedy at its best 7 Jan 2004
Enjoy this double bill of classic black and white English comedies. Two very different stories - great choice to put together on one DVD. Why don't they show pictures like these over Christmas any more instead of the regular trash?
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant 10 May 2004
I am only 19 years old yet I think the Green man is the funniest movie I have ever seen compared with today modern trash. Alsiter Sim is a national treasure and a very young George cole is hilarious as he tries to sell a vacuum caleaner to people who are not interested. There are also cameos by Arthur Lowe and Arthur Brough who went on to star as Mr Granger in Are You Being Served.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Green Man 8 Feb 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The Green Man is a delightful old-fashioned British comedy typical of the 1950's and includes several excellent comedy actors of the era.
Thoroughly enjoyable as one would expect from the great Alistair Sim and George Cole.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Film comedy as it SHOULD be done. 15 Sep 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Two classic British comedy films on one disc is not an opportunity to be missed!
Terry-Thomas is on superb form especially in the wonderful SCHOOL FOR SCOUNDRELS, a film which has some of the greatest comedy acting ever seen from T-T.
Both films are excellent, but SFC is the gem here. One you can watch again and again - and still laugh out loud!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This film's theatrical origins are very noticable, but it doesn't take away from the enjoyment at all. In fact it is quite filmic with some good location scenes. Sim is the trump card in the kind of role written for his brand of dark humour. It also boasts a very good screenplay full of satire about staid and civilised English life (as it was then), the stresses of embarking on elicit affairs, class snobbery and the British middle class' love of murder mysteries, contrasting with their own conservative lives. A good turn is put in by George Cole as the slightly vulgar but enthusiastic salesman who puts his foot in the way of cunning Alastair Sim's plans. Great old British fun that looks quite nostalgic now.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Alistair Sim 5 Oct 2001
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
If you like Alistair Sim, arguably Britain's finest comedy actor, you'll love this. The range of facial expression he uses to convey his anguish at the thwarting of his plans by circumstances beyond his control is simply superb. Ably assisted by George Cole (as in so many of his films) this film is a gentle comic reminder of a time gone by.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Alistair Sim at his usual best.
Published 10 days ago by H C A Montgomerie
5.0 out of 5 stars Alistair Sim in THE GREEN MAN on VHS
Alistair Sim: classic, great actor specializing in eccentric characters. I bought this because he's in it and thoroughly enjoyed movie , even though viewed years ago. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Danny.
3.0 out of 5 stars No subtitles
This is rather an amusing film which I bought for my hard-of-hearing father. Unfortunately this DVD doesn't come with subtitles. Read more
Published 4 months ago by R. Garner
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Ealing Comedy
Just right for a winters evening. Much better than anything you will catch on current TV. Reccomended viewing for nostalgia lovers.
Published 4 months ago by max Sanders
5.0 out of 5 stars killing time at The Green Man Inn..
When Alastair Sim's assassin extraordinaire is hired to dispose of a British politician before his posting to the Middle East, he devises a plan to blow him up at The Green Man... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Arch Stanton
5.0 out of 5 stars comedy genius
I love this film an alastair sim is just brilliant through out it well worth seeing if you have never seen it
Published 6 months ago by metalman
4.0 out of 5 stars Absolute shower!
School for Scoundrels is of course a five star movie from the golden age of British Comedy movie making. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Mr. M. G. Blake
4.0 out of 5 stars Beware the Scoundrels!
This fine film gets four stars effortlessly but this is not a film review but a quick word of warning about the DVD releases of "School for Scoundrels" - The film was released in a... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Substrata
5.0 out of 5 stars Bought as a present
Unable to give any direct feedback as this was bought as a present. However, I have had feedback from the recipient and he liked it.
Published 14 months ago by A. John Chubb
3.0 out of 5 stars Alastair Sim is Green
Interesting humorous film with good acting all around. particularly by Sim as the killer (not giving away any spoilers, this is stated right at the beginning). Read more
Published 16 months ago by Mandog
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