Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) - Rotten Tomatoes

Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Kind Hearts and Coronets Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Alec Guinness gets to die eight times, playing a line of successors to a dukedom, in the Ealing black comedy Kind Hearts and Coronets. Louis Mazzini (Dennis Price) is ninth in line to inherit the dukedom from the aristocratic D'Ascoyne family. Louis vows to kill all eight people who stand between him and the duke's title. Aside from two cases of natural causes, Louis works through the list, eliminating rivals (all played by Guinness). Along the way he romances Sibella (Joan Greenwood), a childhood friend who ends up marrying a dullard, and Edith (Valerie Hobson), the beautiful widow of one of his victims with whom he plans to share his title. But just when Louis is ready to assume the D'Ascoyne mantle, a bizarre irony strikes.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Classics, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Robert Hamer, John Dighton
In Theaters:
On DVD: Sep 10, 2002
Ealing Studios


Dennis Price
as Louis Mazzini
Valerie Hobson
as Edith D'Ascoyne
Cecil Ramage
as Crown Counsel
Hugh Griffith
as Lord High Steward
John Salew
as Mr. Perkins
Lynn Evans
as The Farmer
Eric Messiter
as Burgoyne
Anne Valery
as The Girl in the Punt
Arthur Lowe
as The Reporter
Lyn Evans
as The Farmer
Barbara Leake
as The Schoolmistress
Clive Morton
as Prison Governor
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Kind Hearts and Coronets

Critic Reviews for Kind Hearts and Coronets

All Critics (38) | Top Critics (6)

At once a witty comedy of manners, a grotesque serial-killer caper and an acerbic satire on the class system.

Full Review… | August 17, 2011
Time Out
Top Critic

Robert Hamer's 1949 film is often cited as the definitive black, eccentric British comedy, yet it's several cuts better than practically anything else in the genre.

Full Review… | September 3, 2010
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

Translation to a screen comedy has been effected with a mature wit.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

It's a brilliantly cynical film without a hint of middle-class guilt or bitterness.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A high comedy that is enlivened with cynicism, loaded with dramatic irony and shot through with a suspicion of social satire.

Full Review… | December 20, 2014
Daily Telegraph

Shot through with pitch black humour and biting satire on both the moribund upper class and the grasping venality of the suburban middle class.

Full Review… | September 1, 2011

Audience Reviews for Kind Hearts and Coronets

Fantastic performances and a tightly wound script as well as some pitch black humour. Full review later.

Thomas Bowler

Super Reviewer


An expertly crafted British black comedy, Kind Hearts and Coronets features a remarkably witty script and eight iconic performances from Sir Alec Guinness as every member of the antagonist d'Ascoyne family, not to mention the marvelously cheeky work Dennis Price put forth as the lead anti-hero. A true treat of cinematic cynicism in a fresh, post-WWII European society.

Kristijonas Fussman
Kristijonas Fussman

Super Reviewer

Sir Alec Guinness does a remarkable job indeed playing an entire family (!) slated for revenge after disowning a member who simply marries for love rather than position but this really is the underrated Dennis Price's film as the suave and genteel soul of her revenge ... served cold. The heat herein comes from the ever deliciously sultry Joan Greenwood as his destined soulmate and only match.

Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

Kind Hearts and Coronets Quotes

Duke of Chalfont: It had to be said that Henry was no longer to take part in activities.
– Submitted by Augusta M (3 years ago)
Sibella: Louis, I think I've married the most boring man in London!
Duke of Chalfont: England?
Sibella: In Europe!
– Submitted by Augusta M (3 years ago)
Edith D'Ascoyne: Kind hearts are more than coronets, and simple faith than Norman blood.
– Submitted by doruk (4 years ago)

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