February 20, 2017


The Adventures of Hal 5 – 1958 | 59 mins | Family | B&W

Plot Synopsis

The Adventures of Hal 5

Adapted from the novel Hal 5 and the Haywards by Henry Donald, this Children’s Film Foundation featurette was an early directorial venture for frequent Hammer helmer Don Sharp. The car is really the star of this film and Hal 5 predates other family films involving autos with idiosyncratic personalities like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) or Herbie from The Love Bug (1968), the children meanwhile are patronisingly wholesome.

Former RAF pilot, Dicey, decides to take up farming after being demobbed, and needing the money he decides to sell his battered old 1928 Austin 7; registration HAL 5. Hal has a personality all of his own, and is pleased when he is bought by local vicar Hayward. Unfortunately the Austin is in a bad state of repair and crooked mechanic, Goorlie, conceals its faulty ignition. Even when Hayward returns with the car, Gorlie falsely claims the engine needs a re-bore to keep bleeding money from the naive clergyman. Gorlie is eventually forced to buy the car back and plans an insurance swindle to cover up his cooking of the books from garage manager, Cooper.

Production Team

Don Sharp: Director
Jo Jago: Cinematography
Eily Boland: Film Editing
Henry Donald: Novel
W.L. Trytel: Original Music
Gilbert Church: Producer
Don Sharp: Script
Laurie Peake: Sound
George Adams: Sound


William Russell: The Vicar
Janina Faye: Moira
Peter Godsell: Charles
Edwin Richfield: Cooper
David Morrell: Dicey
John Charlesworth: Ralph
John Glyn-Jones: Mr. Goorlie

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