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Kind Hearts And Coronets - Digitally Restored (80 Years of Ealing) [DVD] [1949]

Alec Guinness , Dennis Price , Robert Hamer , Henry Cass    Universal, suitable for all   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (85 customer reviews)
Price: 12.14 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

Set in Victorian England, Robert Hamer's 1949 masterpiece Kind Hearts and Coronets remains the most gracefully mordant of Ealing Comedies. Dennis Price plays Louis D'Ascoyne, the would-be Duke of Chalfont whose Mother was spurned by her noble family for marrying an Italian singer for love. Louis resolves to murder the several of his relatives ahead of him in line for the Dukedom, all of whom are played by Alec Guinness, in order to avenge his Mother--for, as Louis observes, " revenge is a dish which people of taste prefer to eat cold". He gets away with it, only to be arraigned for the one murder of which he is innocent. Guinness' virtuoso performances have been justly celebrated, ranging as they do from a youthful D'Ascoyne concealing his enthusiasm for public houses from his priggish wife ("she has views on such places") to a brace of doomed uncles and one aunt, ranging from the doddery to the peppery. Miles Malleson is a splendid doggerel-spouting hangman, while Valerie Hobson and Joan Greenwood take advantage of unusually strong female roles. But the great joy of Kind Hearts and Coronets is the way in which its appallingly black subject matter (considered beyond the pale by many critics at the time) is conveyed in such elegantly ironic turns of phrase by Dennis Price's narrator/anti-hero. Serial murder has never been conducted with such exquisite manners and discreet charm. --David Stubbs

Product Description

Kind Hearts and Coronets is regarded as one of the best Golden-Age Ealing comedies and is included on the British Film Institute’s list of the 100 Best British Films of the 20th Century.

Alec Guinness features in eight different roles as the unsuspecting members of the aristocratic D’Ascoyne family--murdered one by one by the scheming, outcast cousin Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price). Mazzini's mother was a D'Ascoyne by birth, but when she ran away with an opera singer she was ostracized by her family as a result. When her dying wish to be buried in the family crypt is refused, Louis vows to get his revenge. As he ascends the social ranks, he is torn between his love for now-married childhood sweetheart, and equally devilish Sibella (Joan Greenwood), and the saintly wife of one of his victims, Edith D’Ascoyne (Valerie Hobson).

A sparkling new restoration of the Ealing Studios comedy classic.

Special Features
  • Audio Commentary with Peter Bradshaw, Terence Davies & Matthew Guinness           
  • John Landis Introduction 
  • Dennis Price: Those British Faces  
  • BBC Radio 3 The Essay - British Cinema of the 1940s: Kind Hearts and Coronets Audio Featurette
  • Alternative American Ending        
  • Restoration Comparison  
  • Behind the Scenes Stills Gallery    
  • Excerpt from BECTU History Project interview with Douglas Slocombe
  • Trailer

Product Description

United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Mono ), SPECIAL FEATURES: Alternative Footage, Behind the scenes, Black & White, Cast/Crew Interview(s), Commentary, Featurette, Interactive Menu, Photo Gallery, Remastered, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: Alec Guinness gets to die eight times, playing a line of successors to a dukedom, in the Ealing black comedy Kind Hearts and Coronets. Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price) is ninth in line to inherit the dukedom from the aristocratic D'Ascoyne family. Louis vows to kill all eight people who stand between him and the duke's title. Aside from two cases of natural causes, Louis works through the list, eliminating rivals (all played by Guinness). Along the way he romances Sibella (Joan Greenwood), a childhood friend who ends up marrying a dullard, and Edith (Valerie Hobson), the beautiful widow of one of his victims with whom he plans to share his title. But just when Louis is ready to assume the D'Ascoyne mantle, a bizarre irony strikes. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: BAFTA Awards, Venice Film Festival, ...Kind Hearts and Coronets ( Kind Hearts & Coronets )
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