Directed by John Boulting (1959; 105 minutes; 16 mm)
“There is nothing timorous about the Boulting Brothers and nothing half-hearted about the way in which they take up their cudgels and rush to the attack whenever this sceptered race seems to them in need of a reminder that it is by no means perfect. In their latest swingeing satire, I’m All Right Jack, they deplore the callous egocentricity discernible, these days, almost everywhere—but especially in industrial relations. Who’s to blame? Why, the entire shooting match, according to the busy Boultings—and with blithe enthusiasm and a splendid impartiality they proceed to trounce the trade unions on the one hand, while belabouring the bosses on the other… . The outstanding performance in this biting and hilarious film comes from Mr. Peter Sellers as a shop steward who is capable of interpreting the management’s lightest word as justification for a strike: he rattles off reams of polysyllabic text-book patter but the simple phrase ‘Everybody Out!’ is never far from his lips. As Mr. Sellers plays him, he is a decent, honest man—and when his wife, the divine Miss Irene Handl, leaves him to his own devices, he makes of the striker stricken a most touching figure. The Goon has blossomed into a superb actor.” —Elspeth Grant, The Tatler and Bystander, 1959
This screening is part of the series Borderline: European Cinema 1959 and is co-sponsored by the European Studies Council at Yale and the Yale Center for British Art.