Its interesting, checking back on the history of Ealing Comedies, that the Ealing Age spanned just 10 years between 1947 and 1957. A short time of course, but when you look at the number of classic films they produced in that time, its amazing they amount of quality they managed to squeeze out of a decade.
Whisky Galore!, Passport to Pimlico, The Lavender Hill Mob, all classics of their time and they don’t date, I promise.
My favourites though are Kind Hearts and Coronets, The Man in the White Suit and The Ladykillers and a big reason for that is Sir Alec Guinness whose performances in each one are fantastic. The innocent turned fugitive inventor who creates an unbreakable, unstainable cloth; the leader of a band of criminals who pits his wits against an aged landlady; or the tour-de-force as 8 members of the D’Ascoyne family (male and female) offed by a manipulating, vengeful relative.
I like to think of Ealing Comedies not just as classics of the genre, and of past times, but character studies fleshed out into beautiful tales of morality.