George in Civvy Street

 

This turned out to be George Formby’s last feature film, made just after WW2 had finished in 1946 - and maybe audiences tastes had changed by then, although I personally don’t give much credence to this theory because George Formby remained very popular and even had a hit show in London’s West End in 1951 – Zip Goes a Million. 

 

With his ongoing popularity it should have been easy to adapt the films but here again I don’t think there would need to be much change there even.

The Lion and The Unicorn Pub

 

In the film, George and his pal Ronald Shiner  go back to George’s rundown pub the Unicorn and try to run it as a  business. They find it difficult going – the main problem being  the  rivalry between  the Lion pub across the river from them – (even though George’s childhood sweetheart owns it.)

 

George in Civvy Street

Wally Patch plays one of the baddies this time trying to close them down with various wicked schemes.   Songs include  We’ve Been A Long Time Gone (on the demob ship), Christened With A Horseshoe (in the civilian clothes shop), It Could Be (in the Unicorn), and a really good one called  You Don’t Need A License For That’

Rosalyn Boulter plays his girl friend – we have done a piece on her before on here – She had made a number of films before this, but to be in a George Formbv film means she is well remembered really for that one only even though her talents on screen and Theatre are impressive.  She married and went to the USA to live and work.

Rosalyn Boulter For Them That Trespass 1948

 

ABOVE: ‘For Them That Trespass’ in 1948

 

Not long after this film she had a leading part in Richard Todd’s first film ‘For Them That Trespass’ in 1948

The Alice dream sequence with the Mad March Hare song was really good and unusual, featuring George singing ‘ The Mad March Hare’.

Some of the outdoor scenes were shot near Richmond in Surrey – and probably Sonning Bridge – pictured below.

Sonning is where the Prime Minister – very much in the news at this time – lives

Sonning Bridge 2

 

 

There is a down-to-earth charm about the films of George Formby, and in them his performances are much better than he is often given credit for.    His films exude the warmth and charm of a bygone era.

On screen in ALL of his films, he dominates the screen and is able to pull off singing the songs – sometimes direct to camera which is rarely done although he has the charisma and confidence to pull that off.  I can’t think of many – if any film stars who can do that.

He is the star of every film he is in – Star with a capital S,  I think

Turned out nice again, hasn’t it?

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