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Sunday, 12 June 2011

School for Scoundrels - British Comey Classic from 1959.


The above clip is where Henry Palfrey is made to look silly in front of his girlfriend by the ruthless cad Deluaney during a tennis match.

School for Scoundrel is a very excellent British comedy movie taken from the "one-upmanship" series of books by Stephen Potter. The main character, Henry Palfrey played by Ian Carmichael, is a failure in sport and love, and victim of unscrupulous conmen. He decides to enrol it the "School of Lifemanship." This school is run by Dr. Potter who is played by Alistair Sim. He is an equally devious character, but his talents are turned to helping failures like Henry Palfrey to venture back into the trepidations of a world of conmen and pay them back at their own games.

Dr Potter teaches young Palfrey how to win in life and get the better of his arch rival Raymond Delauney played by the wonderful Terry Thomas - the perfect nasty, English cad. Palfrey is taught to use more advanced underhand means from his School of Lifemanship that are not exactly dishonest, but a little economical in nobility - how to win without actually cheating - something Dr Potter refers to as ploys.

Janette Scott is the fair lady that is the object of Henry Palfrey's more noble intentions, but the English cad, Raymond Delauney has stolen her affections from under the nose of our reluctant hero. This is what makes him go to the School for Scoundrels in the first place.

In the clip below, Palfrey tries to buy a car from a couple of shark salesmen who stripe him up a treat. After attending the School for Scoundrels he must come back and rectify his mistake. 

This is British comedy at its best and retains that wonderful old retro British flavor of a bygone time.

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