The Maggie (1953)

Dir. Alexander Mackendrick / UK / Comedy / B&W / 92m

Ealing Studios’ output from the 1940s and 1950s helped define what was arguably the golden age of British cinema. It also fostered great directors like Alexander Mackendrick.

‘The Maggie’, directed by Mackendrick, is a heart-warming comedy about an American businessman (Paul Douglas) whose brash, glad-handing techniques earn nothing but cold stares in a tiny Scottish village. Ever anxious to cut costs, Douglas arranges with a local puffer boat captain (taciturn Alex Mackenzie) to move his valuable cargo to a remote Scottish island.

However, the dilapidated boat, The Maggie, is not up to the task and the American soon realises he has been conned. What follows is a gentle battle of wits between the outsider and the scheming crew who are determined to keep the contract.

Crinan and Islay (their place and people) provide authentic seaside detail to a film that is firmly in the Ealing tradition of the little man against the giant machine.

the maggie

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Crinan, Islay

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