7.6/10
2,937
36 user 21 critic

The Horse's Mouth (1958)

A somewhat vulgar but dedicated painter searches for the perfect realization of his artistic vision, much to the chagrin of others.

Director:

Ronald Neame

Writers:

Joyce Cary (novel), Alec Guinness (screenplay)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Alec Guinness ... Gulley Jimson
Kay Walsh ... Dee Coker
Renee Houston ... Sara Monday
Mike Morgan Mike Morgan ... Nosey
Robert Coote ... Sir William Beeder
Arthur Macrae Arthur Macrae ... A.W. Alabaster
Veronica Turleigh Veronica Turleigh ... Lady Beeder
Michael Gough ... Abel
Reginald Beckwith Reginald Beckwith ... Capt. Jones
Ernest Thesiger ... Hickson
Gillian Vaughan Gillian Vaughan ... Lollie
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Storyline

Gulley Jimson is broke, difficult, conniving, uncouth, and a welcher, but an artist. The visions in his head may not really satisfy him when realized, but the quest continues, for the perfect wall. The Beeders leave for six weeks of vacation, and return to find a seven thousand pound committment, and the wall of their living room a national treasure, even though living with a wall mural of feet is not their cup of tea. Then, in a bombed out church scheduled for demolition, THE wall that can become his vision. Written by Bruce Cameron <dumarest@midcoast.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Smart Alec See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 March 1959 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Straight from the Horse's Mouth See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Knightsbridge Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One day Director Ronald Neame found Sir Alec Guinness sulking in his dressing room, refusing to come to the set. According to Neame, Guinness felt he hadn't been stroked enough and explained, "Actors are emotionally fourteen-year-olds. We need to be chastised like children, and we need to be hugged and told we're doing fine work. We are the children who never grow up." See more »

Goofs

(at around 12 mins) Gully Jimson is served a pint of beer in the pub. The amount of beer in the glass varies inconsistently in subsequent shots. See more »

Quotes

Gulley Jimson: I have news for you... I'm going to be a little bit ill.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The South Bank Show: Sir Alec Guinness (1985) See more »

Soundtracks

Lieutenant Kije
by Sergei Prokofiev (as Prokofieff)
Arranged by Kenneth V. Jones
Conducted by Muir Mathieson
See more »

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User Reviews

A real "Art" movie
3 October 2003 | by McVoutySee all my reviews

One of the best movies about art ever made, `The Horse's Mouth' examines the relationships between vision and creation, between art and commerce, and – most importantly – between art and criticism; and makes us laugh at the same time. Alec Guinness is inspired (when was he ever not inspired, come to think of it) as Gully Jimson, a painter of unlimited ideas who has met with only limited success in the art marketplace – partly because he is so contemptuous of that marketplace. His search for the perfect wall on which to paint, and the subject matter he ultimately winds up painting on one of the walls found in his search, is priceless. The Joyce Cary novel, and its companions in the Jimson trilogy (`Herself Surprised' and `To Be a Pilgrim') are well worth reading, but this movie is a very British, very engaging classic. In many ways, it's the movie that `Pollack' (good though it was) should have been.


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