DAMN THE DEFIANT!
H.M.S. DEFIANT
2014, Sony Repertory, 101 min, UK, Dir: Lewis Gilbert

In this rousing British action film, Alec Guinness plays Captain Crawford, the commander of a warship who clashes with his sadistic first officer - a deliciously evil and sadistic Dirk Bogarde. When tensions between the men - and their subordinates - lead to mutiny, Crawford is forced to choose between duty and ethics in an effort to restore justice.


THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI
2014, Sony Repertory, 161 min, UK, USA, Dir: David Lean

David Lean won the first of two Academy Awards for Best Director for this epic portrait of the clash of wills between a British POW, Col. Nicholson (Alec Guinness, who initially turned down the role), and a tradition-bound Japanese officer (silent-film star Sessue Hayakawa) over the building of a railway bridge in the jungle during WWII. William Holden stars as the cynically realistic American POW who is forced to trek back into the hellish jungle to destroy the bridge with Jack Hawkins and his rag-tag team of commandos. Brilliantly adapted by Carl Foreman and Michael Wilson from Pierre Boulle’s novel, with an unforgettable score courtesy of Malcolm Arnold. “There has been a lot of argument about the film’s attitude toward war. I think it is a painfully eloquent statement on the general folly and waste of war.” -David Lean


THE CARD
THE PROMOTER
1952, Park Circus/MGM, 85 min, UK, Dir: Ronald Neame

Spy novelist Eric Ambler might have seemed an unlikely choice to adapt Arnold Bennett’s novel about a charming go-getter, but the result is a thoroughly enjoyable comedy. Alec Guinness plays one of his first romantic leads as Denry Machin, a young man whose ambition and occasional willingness to bend the rules help him rise through the ranks of society. Among the women who catch his eye are Glynis Johns, Valerie Hobson and future singing star Petula Clark.


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