The Ladykillers


Everyone loves gut-busting belly-laughs in a film. But sometimes, big laughs slow things down. There’s something to be said for films that amuse us for their duration. Join us for a conversation about a film that makes us smile from its first moment to its last: The Ladykillers, Alexander Mackendrick’s 1955 dark comedy starring Alec Guinness as the creepiest criminal and a young Peter Sellars as one of his gang. Dan praises the film’s economy and compares it to John Cheever’s “Reunion”; Mike explains how it reminds him of Gilbert & Sullivan. And while they dissect the film and how it manipulates the viewer, they still cannot answer the question, “Are those really Alec Guinness’s teeth?”

If you’d like to read “Reunion,” the terrific story by John Cheever to which they compare The Ladykillers, you’ll find it in this collection—which, incidentally, is a book everyone should have.

Follow us on X or Letterboxd–and let us know what you’d like us to watch! Incredible bumper music by John Deley.

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