Silver Sirens

The Golden Age of British Cinema

By Richard Williams. Updated: 30th August, 2015.

  • Glennis Lorimer as the famous Gainsborough Lady, in the main title for Gainsborough Pictures
  • The famous gong of J. Arthur Rank
  • Ealing Studios
  • Associated British Picture Corporation
  • Two Cities Films
  • Associated Talking Pictures
  • London Films

British cinema during the 1940s enjoyed a golden age as wartime film-makers found a new freedom to reflect the national mood, producing works of unparalleled ambition and boldness.

Audiences turned to Ealing comedy films, escapist melodrama - often from Gainsborough Pictures - and World War II propaganda.

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Kathleen Harrison (Lillian Lord) listens to shopkeeper Stanley Holloway (Henry Lord) in The Happy Family (1952)
The Happy Family
Kathleen Harrison listens to Stanley Holloway in The Happy Family
Sally Gray (Vivienne) and Paul Lukas (Zoltini) share an embrace in A Window in London (1940)
A Window in London
Sally Gray and Paul Lukas embrace in A Window in London (1940)
A deserted Westminster bridge and Big Ben form the background as an army truck stops a woman and her dog out during curfew.  A scene from Seven Days to Noon (1950)
Seven Days to Noon
An army truck stops in front of Big Ben in Seven Days to Noon
Jack Pennington (Jack Hulbert) and Algy Longworth (Claude Hulbert) search among the rubble in a disused Underground station in a scene from Bulldog Jack (1935)
Bulldog Jack
Jack and Claude Hulbert search an Underground station in Bulldog Jack
Colour photo from This Happy Breed (1944) featuring people in a crowd waving Union Jacks
This Happy Breed
This Happy Breed colour photo of a crowd waving Union Jacks
Main title from Dangerous Moonlight (1941)
Dangerous Moonlight
Dangerous Moonlight (1941) opening credits
Alastair Sim (Miss Amelia Fritton) and George Cole ('Flash' Harry) in Blue Murder at St. Trinian's (1957)
Blue Murder at St. Trinian's
Alastair Sim and George Cole in Blue Murder at St. Trinian's
Lobby card from The Weak and the Wicked (1954) featuring Glynis Johns.  Women... barred from men!  Associated British presents Glynis Johns in The Weak and The Wicked.
The Weak and the Wicked
The Weak and the Wicked Lobby Card - Glynis Johns
Logo for the Two Cities Film production company.  This was the company's second logo.
Two Cities Film production company logo (2)
Main title from The 39 Steps (1959)
The 39 Steps
The 39 Steps opening credits (1959)
Shirley Pemberton (Barbara Murray) and Arthur Pemberton (Stanley Holloway) in Passport to Pimlico
Passport to Pimlico
Shirley (Murray) and Arthur (Holloway) in Passport to Pimlico
Jim Colter (John Mills) delivers an uppercut to Ted Purvis (Stewart Granger) in Waterloo Road
Waterloo Road
Jim (John Mills) punches Ted (Stewart Granger) in Waterloo Road
Pearl Bolton (Kay Hammond), in a gingham dress, eats an apple as she sits on her bed and looks at a pin-up photo of a male film star
Britannia of Billingsgate
Pearl Bolton (Kay Hammond) eats an apple as she sits on her bed
Joe (Jonathan Ashmore), in plaid shirt and grey cardigan, holds his pet goat as they sit outside in A Kid for Two Farthings
A Kid for Two Farthings
Joe (Jonathan Ashmore) holds his pet goat in A Kid for Two Farthings
Main title from Cage of Gold (1950)
Cage of Gold
Cage of Gold (1950) opening credits

Recent DVD & Blu-ray Releases


The Solitary Child (1958) [DVD]
The Solitary Child DVD from Network and The British Film.  Features Barbara Shelley as Harriet and Philip Friend as James Random

Released:
24th August, 2015
Price: £7.25
Buy The Solitary Child from Amazon.co.uk

A young model’s marriage to a gentleman farmer, acquitted of murdering his first wife, nearly leads to her own untimely end.
Featuring: The Solitary Child.

Quiet Weekend (1946) [DVD]
Quiet Weekend DVD from from Network and The British Film.  DVD cover features Derek Farr as Denys Royd and Barbara White as Miranda.

Released:
17th August, 2015
Price: £7.25
Buy Quiet Weekend from Amazon.co.uk

The Royds spend a weekend at their country cottage and get involved with poachers.
Featuring: Quiet Weekend.

Rembrandt (1936) [DVD]
Rembrandt DVD from Network and The British Film.  Features Charles Laughton and Gertrude Lawrence

Released:
17th August, 2015
Price: £7.25
Buy Rembrandt from Amazon.co.uk

Episodes in the life of the 17th-century painter.
Featuring: Rembrandt.

Midnight Menace (1937) [DVD]
Midnight Menace DVD from Network andThe British Film

Released:
17th August, 2015
Price: £7.25
Buy Midnight Menace from Amazon.co.uk

A reporter is killed under mysterious circumstances, and his cartoonist colleague starts an investigation of his own.
Featuring: Midnight Menace.

The Weak and the Wicked (1954) [DVD]
The Weak and the Wicked DVD from Network and The British Film.  Features Glynis Johns as Jean Raymond.

Released:
10th August, 2015
Price: £7.25
Buy The Weak and the Wicked from Amazon.co.uk

Flashbacks show how various women came to find themselves in prison.
Featuring: The Weak and the Wicked.

The Jessie Matthews Revue Volume 3 (1933) [DVD]
The Jessie Matthews Revue Volume 3 from Network and The British Film.  Features Head over Heels and The Man From Toronto

Released:
3rd August, 2015
Price: £9.00
Buy The Jessie Matthews Revue Volume 3 from Amazon.co.uk

Third volume featuring Jessie Matthews.
Featuring: Head Over Heels, The Man from Toronto.

» See all DVDs and Blu-ray releases.


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