"It’s a comedy that isn’t all that concerned with being funny and which contains themes of social, economic, and cultural significance, built upon a story exploring the consequences of a massive scientific discovery on mankind." - Jeff Saporito, Screen Prism. And it *is* funny but that heckling cacophony at the end harshed my buzz. Poor Sid Some great performances though. 3.5 stars
Not sure why this is labeled a "comedy." It plays as an intellectual drama for the most part. The pacing is particularly slow as it takes over half of the movie for the invention to be even mentioned. Then slowly winds to an end with some pace, but it seems far too late by this point. Some decent performances and nice camerawork... but that's about it. The film itself is underwhelming, slow and quite unappealing.
An entertaining film with a cast much better than the subject material would require. But what a treat! Guinness successfully pulls off slapstick. As good as Sir Alec was, the standout for me was Joan Greenwood - her voice! Her lines are delivered with such buttery-smooth tones that she elevates the film everytime she speaks. It's almost Garbo-esque.
The rhythmic, musical persistence of cultural/scientific progress, its often incongruous relationship to economics. The white suit "wearing" Alec Guiness, his own concept quite literally overshadowing his physiognomy, is one of the most striking images the cinema has given us. Capitalist curtailment is conveyed as nothing less than death incarnate. The dichotomy between innovation & market balance is irresolvable.
power of sci-fi was always in the ability to imagine a believable scenario and explore how it would affect us as individuals and the society as whole. it's a thought experiment of our own unwillingness in accepting innovation that is beneficial because we tend to blow up the negative when the status quo is threatened. very similar to our apprehension towards machines that may or may not threaten our jobs..
"You're not even born yet. What do you think happened to all the other things? The razor blade that never gets blunt, and the car that runs on water with a pinch of something in it. No, they'll never let your stuff on the market in a million years." Capital and Labor are the enemy of innovation. Thoroughly enjoyable watch, Mackendrick's was a cinema of economy, movement and humor in the darkness of society.
Before the socially awkward scientist with the crazy-brilliant ideas became a Disney staple in the 1960s (and revived in THE IMITATION GAME in the 20-teens), Alec Guinness established the template in THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUIT. There’s good humor and some keen observation here, but the pacing doesn’t quite work and the movie drags a bit.
3 1/2 out of 5 stars. A great comedy that made me fall in love with Alec Guinness all over again. The Man in the White Suit is full of subtle humor and the finale was like The Third Man and Stray Dog's love child. A fun little movie that leaves its audience with something to think about. Not perfect, but great nonetheless.