A classic of its day. Thankfully Britain has moved on from the days of pointless class struggle and industrial intrigue.
A much more polished story of a similar line is "The Man in the White Suit" with Alec Guiness.
British humor seems to have lost its way since the days of these classics. Like everyone else they are swamped by the Hollywood entertainment machine and forgotten how to be true to themselves.
I don't dish out 5 stars for too many films but this one gets it without hesitation. This film can be enjoyed in many levels, there's even a bit of slapstick, though don't let that put you off it as it is very estrained. But you will enjoy the characters as they are drawn so close to reality and brilliantly acted by ace stars of the day. Peter Sellers was never better than here as Mr Kite the Union leader. He cleverly under-plays it to make him totally believable, and representative of union
leaders (if we are allowed to generalize). Terri-Thomas read his role to a tee, as the manager with an eye firmly fixed on the golf course whilst paying lip-service to his job, and yet so likable. Margaret Rutherford as the upwardly ambitious upper-class aunt who was probably born for the part. Carmichael as Stanley the naive pawn in their game makes you want to believe in his innocent, if not decent world he thinks he lives in - until the veneers of his vision come crushing down in the end. There is much one can write about this satire and much has been written and very little negative.
I loved it. An exceptional cast doing justice to a tight and very funny script. Many 'laugh out loud' moments and a great insight into 50s, 60s & 70s unionism. True comedy doesn't date, this certainly hasn't.
Provided you're a fan of the old British Ealing comedies, then you'll love this "classic". Peter Sellers, Ian Carmichael, Terry Thomas, Richard Attenborough, Margaret Rutherford, Irene Handel, Liz Fraser, John Le Meseurier - on and on - the "names" are all there: probably one of the biggest collection of British comedy character actors ever to appear in the same movie. And whilst the theme - dodgy workers versus corrupt bosses - might seem "old hat", it still resonates today when you hear about "strike-breaking teams being trained offshore to deal with a threatened dock strike."
In my view this is Peter Sellers' best movie. His portrayal of Kite, the Union leader, is accurate and convincing. It's a very funny movie too!