Based on a true story. The name of the real ship, that sunk Feb 5 1941 - during WWII - was S/S Politician. Having left Liverpool two days earlier, heading for Jamaica, it sank outside Eriskay, The Outer Hebrides, Scotland, in bad weather, containing 250,000 bottles of whisky. The locals gathered as many bottles as they could, before the proper authorities arrived, and even today, bottles are found in the sand or in the sea every other year.Written by
Jörg Ausfelt <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Ealing chief Michael Balcon was furious at how expensive the film was becoming (in excess of £20,000) until he finally saw the initial footage. See more »
When Captain Waggett telephones the Post Office, he is unable to get through to the switchboard operator. Seconds later, he is speaking to Mistress Campbell. He could not possibly do so without the Post Office switchboard connecting him. See more »
Opening credits prologue: By a strange coincidence the S.S. Cabinet Minister was wrecked off the Island of Todday [in the movie] two years after the S.S. Politician, with a similar cargo, was wrecked [in real life] off the Island of Eriskay. But the coincidence stops there, for our story and the characters in it are pure fiction. See more »
When I hear the phrase-"Celtic Twilight"-not so much in use now--I've come to think of this film. The meaning of "Celtic Twilight" might be summarized as the sense that history has passed by Ireland and other Celtic peoples in Scotland, Wales, Isle of Man, etc., and what we see now is a sort of a cultural endgame, leading to its long and inevitable death throes.
Whiskey Galore, about a wartime whiskey-starved island in the Outer Hebrides, displays these kinds of characters: a full-grown man afraid of telling his mother he wants to marry a local girl, and his intolerant domineering crone of a mother; a gossipy telephone operator; an out-of-it ferry captain, unaware of the rising sexual tension his daughters are undergoing; and dozens of mischievous, winking, alcohol-craving townspeople who are dying to loot an abandoned ship full of their beloved whiskey but afraid to do it on the Sabbath!
One more character, played by Basil Radford, is the stuffy, self-important head of the local militia, out of step with the other residents, sworn to uphold the law. Apparently the director, Alexander Makendrick, objected to the character's silly and ineffectual pomposity.
This is truly one of the great, charming Ealing comedies, very remindful to me of the Irish-American citizens of my mother's home town, Brasher Falls, New York. A gem in its sly humor--although the video copies I've seen are of a murky quality.
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