February 23, 2017


Tony Draws a Horse – 1950 | 91 mins | Comedy | B&W

Plot Synopsis

Tony Draws a Horse

This engaging if uneven satire on Freudianism was tastefully adapted from Lesley Storm’s risqué stage play and directed by the prolific John Paddy Carstairs. There are some engaging performances, notably from Cecil Parker as a harassed Harley Street surgeon, Anne Crawford as his liberal wife, and an entertaining cameo from Mervyn Johns as her cheerful father. This role is acerbically well played by Crawford, an attractive blonde actress whose career was tragically cut short at the age of 36 when she died of leukaemia six years after completing this film.

Prominent Harley Street doctor Howard Fleming (Cecil Parker) and as his liberal psychiatrist wife Claire (Anne Crawford) are divided over the correct way to deal with their innocent eight-year-old son Tony (Anthony Lang), who has drawn a picture of a horse on the surgery wall; with all the reproductive anatomy accurately detailed. Whilst Howard is all for spanking his precocious offspring, Claire contests that the boy should be encouraged to freely express himself.

The couple try to amicably discuss Tony’s behaviour but Claire takes offence to her husband’s suggestion that she is to blame for their son’s high jinks – and storms out to return to her parent’s home. Claire’s arrival sparks panic in the Parson household as her sister Joan (Barbara Murray) is soon to marry Tim (Derek Bond), an old flame of Claire’s. The spirit of rebellion soon spreads through the Parson household; at Newhaven, Claire and her sister’s fiancé Tim jump aboard a steamer bound for Dieppe and spend the evening drinking with a wedding party, while Alfred Parsons (Mervyn Johns) spends the afternoon getting drunk in a public house before being arrested by the police for affray.

Production Team

John Paddy Carstairs: Director
Bernard Robinson: Art Direction
Jack Hildyard: Cinematography
Eleanor Abbey: Costume Design
Gerald Thomas: Editing
Biddy Chrystal: Makeup Department
George Blackler: Makeup Department
Bretton Byrd: Original Music
Harold Richmond: Producer
Brock Williams: Producer
Brock Williams: Script
John Dennis: Sound Department
Gordon K McCallum: Sound Department


Cecil Parker: Dr Howard Fleming
Anne Crawford: Clare Fleming
Derek Bond: Tim Shields
Barbara Murray: Joan Parsons
Mervyn Johns: Alfred Parsons
Barbara Everest: Mrs Parsons
Edward Rigby: Grandpa
Dandy Nichols: Mrs Smith

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