The Knack . . . and how to get it

Director: Richard Lester
Screenwriters: Ann Jellicoe, Charles Woods

Institute History

  • 1990 Sundance Film Festival


This ferociously energetic spoof of male sexual drives won Lester the grand prize at the 1965 Cannes Film Festival. Again, Bosley Crowther—a Lester fan! – in his June, 1965 New York Times review:

"With a camera that whizzes like a slapstick in the hands of an old burlesque clown, so swiftly does it dart around an area and whack the crucial points, he [Lester] whips through this neo-Keystone business, flashing sight gags and throw-away lines so fast that it dazzles those accustomed to having their comedies milked and spelled out.

"Ray Brooks, as the herculean lover who has the knack, is the ultimate in cool with his dark suit, dark glasses, hipster haircut, droopy eyelids and disrobing voice. And Michael Crawford is absolutely winning as the lad who is eager to learn, with his long ace that speaks in muted accents, cries out, crinkles in smiles or drops in abrupt elongations to the dimensions of an exclamation point…

"Highpoint in the picture is the running of that hideous iron bed, that skeletal symbol of anything but voluptuousness, through the London streets in a sequence that archly matches the shots of ranks of amorous girls, all dressed alike in white sweaters, lining up for the blessing of Mr. Brooks. A splendid musical score by John Barry makes the whole thing rock and nicely roll. "

Saturday, January 20, 4:15 p.m.
Holiday Village Cinema II

Monday, January 22, 7:15 p.m.
Holiday Village Cinema II


— Tony Safford

Screening Details

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