February 24, 2017


Storm in a Teacup – 1937 | 87 mins | Comedy, Romance | B&W

Plot Synopsis

Storm in a Teacup

Light comedy of manners following the complications in a small Scottish town when a newspaper reporter covers a local dispute. Well directed by Victor Saville and Ian Dalrymple, this comedy based on a German play that was Anglicized for the stage by James Bridie evoked a rapturous response from contemporary critics, most notably filmmaker Basil Wright in The Spectator. Cecil Parker is splendidly pompous as the dictatorial Provost, and the youthful Vivien Leigh and Rex Harrison make a good-looking and charming couple.

Young reporter Frank Burdon (Rex Harrison) travels north to take up a post on a provisional Scottish newspaper on the west coast. Once there, he encounters Vickie Gow (Vivien Leigh) on the pier, daughter of the wealthy and dictatorial Tower Provost Willie Gow (Cecil Parker). Burdon creates a national scandal by revealing the authoritarian harshness of the Provost in ordering an old lady’s faithful dog, Patsy, be destroyed because she hasn’t paid her annual licence. Gow is attempting to climb higher on the political ladder and dreams of standing for Parliament, but when Burdonís story is picked up by the national newspapers his political aspirations are left in tatters. The furious Provost commences legal proceedings against the young journalist for slander and Burdon consequently loses his job and is thrown in jail. The subsequent courtroom appearance descends into a mixture of mockery and rage as Burdon and Gow trade insults; but the case is thrown into utter chaos when Vickie perjures herself on the stand claiming to be Burdonís wife. With Vickie facing certain jail for perjury both Gow and Burdon are forced to reconcile their differences.

Production Team

Ian Dalrymple: Director
Victor Saville: Director
Mutz Greenbaum: Cinematography
Hugh Stewart: Film Editing
Cyril Randell: Film Editing
Frederick Lewis: Original Music
Victor Saville: Producer
Alexander Korda: Producer
Donald Bull: Script
Ian Dalrymple: Script
Charles Tasto: Sound Department
AW Watkins: Sound Department


Vivien Leigh: Victoria \’Vickie\’ Gow
Rex Harrison: Frank Burdon
Cecil Parker: Provost William \’Willie\’ Gow
Sara Allgood: Honoria Hegarty
Ursula Jeans: Lisbet Skirving
Gus McNaughton: Horace Skirving
Lee Strasberg: Willy
Edgar K Bruce: McKellar
Robert Hale: Lord Skerryvore
Quentin McPhearson: Baillie Callender
Arthur Wontner: Procurator Fiscal
Eliot Makeham: Sheriff
Mervyn Johns: Court Bailiff

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