The Man in the White Suit

Year: 1951

Production: Ealing Studios

Director: Alexander Mackendrick

Starring: Alec Guinness, Joan Greenwood, Cecil Parker, Michael Gough, Ernest Thesiger, Howard Marion-Crawford, Duncan Lamont

Screenwriter: Roger MacDougall, John Dighton, Alexander Mackendrick

Based on the play The Man in the White Suit by Roger MacDougall

84 minutes; B/W


A scientist creates an artificial fiber that neither wears out nor gets dirty. To prove it, he makes himself a shining white suit that retains its pristine condition throughout the film. Attempts are made by clothing manufacturers and their workers to suppress the new material. Finally its inventor is cornered in a street where, suddenly and symbolically, his suit begins to disintegrate and is torn to shreds by the angry mob. The film ends wih the scientist planning a second attempt. This fine film is a awitty and pertinent satire whose success owes more to the traditions of the Ealing comedy than to sf.

The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction

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