Scatterbrained young civil servant Dick Lanchester (David Tomlinson) is sent by Sir William Crane (Cecil Parker), Minister of Atomic Energy, to escort Dr Spiegel (Cyril Shaps), a brilliant physicist from the Atomic Energy Research Establishment at Cherwell, to a special NATO conference in London.
While Dick is flirting with Susan Turner (Mary Peach), the daughter of a wealthy local race-horse owner (John Welsh), Spiegel – who turns out to be a spy – runs off with some top-secret microfilm.
Spiegel’s confederates are waiting for him in a horsebox, but he mistakenly climbs into the box which Susan is driving to the races. The horse rears, Spiegel drops the microfilm, and the animal swallows it . . .
He buys the horse at an auction after the race, despite attempts by Lanchester to outbid him and there seems to be nothing he can do to save the film – but in a riotous climax, everything turns out fine in the end.
It’s a standard old-fashioned British farce, coaxed along by the subtly-timed performances of David Tomlinson, Cecil Parker and Richard Wattis. The film was adapted from a novel called Photo Finish by Howard Mason.
Sir William Crane
Special Branch Chief
George A. Cooper