Certainly one of Guinness' best performances as the laboratory dishwasher in a textile mill who invents a fabric that never wears out and never gets dirty, thus incurring the wrath of both management and labour, satirically depicted as being hand-in-glove in their conservative reliance on restrictive practices. Typically, the Ealing formula for goodnatured whimsy prevents Mackendrick from pushing the darker aspects of the theme (eminently present in Thesiger's brooding old vulture of an industrialist) to their logical conclusion. But as David Thomson acutely observed, in a note about the extent to which the acid disenchantment of Sweet Smell of Success was already apparent in Mackendrick's earlier work, there is enough of Kafka in the film to lift it right out of the Ealing comedy tramlines.
Cast and crew
Roger MacDougall, John Dighton, Alexander Mackendrick
Alec Guinness Joan Greenwood Cecil Parker Michael Gough Ernest Thesiger Vida Hope Howard Marion-Crawford Patric Doonan