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The Titfield Thunderbolt (1953)

Cast: Stanley Holloway, Stanley Holloway, George Relph, more...
Director: Charles Crichton, Charles Crichton
    see all cast/crew...

The railroad between Mallingford and Titfield is losing money, and British Rail decides to close it. Clergyman Sam Weech (George Relph) and Squire Gordon (John Gregson) try to save the railroad by buying it. They enlist Valentine (Stanley Holloway), the owner of Titfield's pub, promising him that, since the railroad will be private, he'll be able to keep the bar on the train open all day. They run into opposition from the owners of the rival bus line, who would like to remove the competition. Battle lines are drawn--sometimes even across couples: Joan the barmaid (Gabrielle Brune) helps them while her fiancÚ, steamroller driver Hawkins (Sidney James), joins the opposition. Sam and Gordon have a month to show they can run the railroad efficiently while their opponents start a campaign of sabotage. Written by comedy specialist T.E.B. Clarke and directed with impeccable timing by Charles Crichton, THE TITFIELD THUNDERBOLT is a celebration of a Britain that never was. It features exuberant performances from Holloway as the publican, James as the disgruntled steamroller driver, Hugh Griffith as a disreputable poacher who happens to be an ex-engine driver, and Godfrey Tearle as the bishop who turns out to be a railway enthusiast.

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