Jack Read, a working-class boy, wins a scholarship to a public school as part of a post-World War II experiment in bringing boys of different social classes together. He meets much snobbery...
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Henry Hobson (Charles Laughton) is a successful bootmaker, a widower and a tyrannical father of three daughters. The girls each want to leave their father by getting married, but Henry refuses because marriage traditions require him to pay out settlements.
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Jack Read, a working-class boy, wins a scholarship to a public school as part of a post-World War II experiment in bringing boys of different social classes together. He meets much snobbery along the way as he strives to earn acceptance from his fellow students and some of the teaching staff.Written by
Saintbury School, host to a truly wonderful experiment.
Based on a Warren Chetham Strode play and directed by the supremely talented Roy Boulting, The Guinea Pig is a cinematic delight of the kind that makes me proud to be British.
Set in the 1940s, the picture is showing us the wind of change that occurred in Britain in the 40s as regards the breaking down of class system snobbery after the advent of World War II.
Here our main protagonist is Jack Read (a simply wonderful Richard Attenborough) is a young fresh faced kid from a basic working class family. His father sends him away to posh Saintbury School, a school famed for it's Henry The Eighth heritage, Rugby, Cricket and it's affluent laden scholars. In short our Jack is not so much a fish out of water, but more like a tadpole in a sea of sharks.
He his bullied by class mates for his humble origins, and even the house masters are looking down their noses at him. However, a bit of love and support from home and also from astute teacher Nigel Lorraine (Robert Flemyng brilliant) and Jack, coupled with his guts, could yet make his mark on Saintbury School and beyond.
An important film in many ways, The Guinea Pig seems to be something of an under seen piece. At the time of writing this there are very few user comments written for it on IMDb and only 100 people have voted on it. With that in mind please ignore the current 6.3 rating, for this film is a positive delight. From the harsh early days of Jack's schooling to a delightful Thomas Wolsey inspired wind of change, The Guinea Pig not only gave me a tear in my eye, it also gave me pride within my chest.
Wonderful indeed. 9/10
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