The small back room released in the united states as hour of glory is a 1949 film by the british producer writer director team of michael powell and emeric pressburger starring david farrar and kathleen byron and featuring jack hawkins and cyril cusack it was based on the novel of the same name by nigel balchin. Sammy rice the boffin of the small back room is struggling with alcoholism and the mental as well as the physical pain of coping with an artificial foot when he is called upon to discover the way to dismantle one of several booby trap explosive devices dropped by the germans over britain in 1943. The small back room falls into the latter category the interiors in this black and white picture after a trio in technicolor are close and dimly lit but rustic exteriors including stonehenge and a surrealistic set piece add welcome flair. Despite excellent reviews and a fine cast that includes cyril cusack sidney james and robert morley in a cameo appearance the small back room was a box office disappointment on its original . The small back room whisky galore the fantasy enriched near operatic technicolor dramas for which director writer producer collaborators michael powell and emeric pressburger are perhaps best known such as the life and death of colonel blimp 1943 a matter of life and death 194
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