Kind Hearts and Coronets

Released 1949




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Movie Summary

Robert Hamer

Kind Hearts and Coronets is the story of Louis D'Ascoyne Mazzini, whose mother had been disowned by her aristocratic family when she married an Italian singer. When the family refuses to let her be buried in the family crypt, Louis determines that he will become the tenth Duke of Chalfont, as his mother always wanted - by the simple expedient of murdering all eight people who stand in his way.


Dennis Price

Dennis Price

Louis Mazzini

Alec Guinness

Alec Guinness

Eight ill-fated members of the D'Ascoyne family

Joan Greenwood

Joan Greenwood


Valerie Hobson

Valerie Hobson

Mrs. Edith D'Ascoyne

John Penrose

John Penrose

Lionel Holland

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Although this is perhaps the most famous of all the Ealing comedies, it was not actually filmed at Ealing Studios, as almost all the others were, but at Pinewood Studios.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Louis (narrating, as he is being shown around the castle): Never before had I been to a building so lavishly equipped with the instruments of violent death. They seemed, however, ill-suited for the discreet requirements of 20th-century-homicide...So evening found my host still intact, and myself still without a plan.

    • Duke Ethelred D'Ascoyne: [to Edith, after Henry's funeral]: Glad we had Cousin Henry to take the service. Boring old ass, but it keeps things in the family.

    • The Reverend Lord Henry D'Ascoyne: [showing Louis his church]: You will note that our chantry displays the crocketted and finialed ogee which marks it as very early perpendicular. The bosses to the pendant are typical. And I always say that my west window has all the exuberance of Chaucer without, happily, any of the concomitant crudities of his period.

    • Louis Mazzini: How did you enjoy your honeymoon?
      Sibella: Not at all.
      Louis Mazzini: Not at all?
      Sibella: Not at all.
      Louis Mazzini: And how was Italy?
      Sibella: Oh, impossible! Every time I wanted to go shopping, Lionel dragged me off to a church or a picture gallery. He said he wanted to improve his mind.
      Louis Mazzini: He has room to do so.

    • The Executioner: Even my lamented master, the great Mr. Berry himself, never had the privilege of hanging a duke!

    • Louis Mazzini: I shot an arrow in the air; she fell to earth in Berkeley Square.

  • NOTES (2)

    • The music for this film consists entirely of extracts from Mozart's opera Don Giovanni.

    • It was apparently only intended at first that Alec Guinness should play four of the eight ill-fated members of the D'Ascoyne family, but he lobbied successfully for the chance to play all eight, and became an international star as a result.


More Info About This Movie


Classics, Dark Comedy