Behind the Scenes Look at Kind Hearts and Coronets
This comedic gem, featuring the incomparable Alec Guinness, is a must watch!
Kind Hearts and Coronets Theatrical Trailer HD, courtsey of Film 365
Set in 1900, Kind Hearts and Coronets tells the story of Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price), a Clapham draper's assistant and distant heir to the D'Ascoyne dukedom who decides to murder everyone standing between him and the family title in revenge for their cruel treatment of his mother. From the opening scenes, in which a hangman frets about the "proper" execution of his titled victim ("the last execution of a duke was very badly bungled. That was in the days of the axe of course"), Robert Hamer and John Dighton's whip-smart screenplay and economical direction sweep you up and speed you along.*
One of the more notable points about this the fact that Alec Guinness played NINE of the main movie characters, including the Admiral and Lady Agatha. Which, for when this movie was produced was quite the accomplishment. The most technically acclaimed shots in the film, Guinness appears as all his characters at once in a single frame. This was accomplished by masking the lens. The film was re-exposed several times with Guinness in different positions over several days. Douglas Slocombe, the cinematographer in charge of the effect, recalled sleeping in the studio to make sure nobody touched the camera.