February 25, 2017


King Arthur Was a Gentleman – 1942 | 99 mins | Comedy | B&W


Plot Synopsis

King Arthur Was a Gentleman

A comic fantasy in which Arthur Askey plays Arthur King, a soldier in the army who chances upon an old sword that he believes to be Excalibur. This flag-waving musical comedy was a morale booster for the nation in time of war and propaganda recruiting tool and as such is a missed opportunity for Askey’s unique brand of cheery comedy. Despite some amusing scenes the picture would have benefited from fewer songs and more scripted humour.

Arthur King (Arthur Askey) is a humble employee and army reservist at the War office who grows frustrated at being a Whitehall warrior. After a nightclub incident involving Susan Ashley (Evelyn Dall) being mistaken for the daughter of Colonel Duncannon, Arthur sets the price of his silence as enrolment to the 9th Fusiliers. He finds himself stationed in the Vale of Avalon for basic training and becomes obsessed by the coincidence of his own name with the stories of King Arthur and the knights of the round table.

After digging up a worthless sword, his fellow squaddies decide to play a prank on Arthur by selling him the sword and making him believe the spirit of King Arthur bestowed it on him. Soon the Fusiliers are sent overseas to Africa on active service. After capturing German prisoners, Arthur believes the sword makes him invincible and goes on a dangerous mission behind enemy lines to rescue his comrades.

Production Team

Marcel Varnel: Director
John Bryan: Art Direction
Arthur Crabtree: Cinematography
RE Dearing: Film Editing
Bob Busby: Original Music
Edward Black: Producer
Marriott Edgar: Script
Val Guest: Script
BC Sewell: Sound Department


Arthur Askey: Arthur
Max Bacon: Maxie
Al Burnett: Slim
Evelyn Dall: Susan Ashley
Vera Francis: Vera
Peter Graves: Lance
Brefni O’Rorke: Colonel Duncannon
Anne Shelton: Gwen Duncannon
Ronald Shiner: Sergeant

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