The Knack...And How to Get It (1965) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Knack...And How to Get It (1965)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Knack...And How to Get It Photos

Movie Info

Colin (Michael Crawford, who much later won a Tony Award for his role in Broadway's Phantom of the Opera) is an uptight schoolteacher whose housemate, Tolen (Ray Brooks) is a consummate womanizer. Colin imagines a long line of young women in tight white sweaters on his stairwell, waiting to get into Tolen's room. Jealous of Tolen's incredible success with the ladies, Colin asks Tolen for advice on how to get a girl. When Tolen's advice doesn't seem very practical, Colin decides that his first order of business is to get a bigger bed. Colin is also trying to find a third roommate to take a spare room. Tom (Donal Donnelly), who seems compelled to paint everything in sight, happens by the house, and inserts himself in the spare room without so much as saying "hello." Nancy (Rita Tushingham of A Taste of Honey) is new in town, and wanders the streets of London in a fruitless search for the YWCA. She runs into Colin and Tom at the dump, where they are procuring a gigantic bed. They offer her a ride, and proceed to race through London on the bed. Colin seems too shy to speak much to Nancy, despite Tom's encouragement. Eventually, the trio reach Colin's house, where Tolen works his gruff magic on Nancy, and havoc ensues. Capturing late 1960s London in black-and-white, Richard Lester's The Knack. . .and How to Get It was released between the director's two successes with the Beatles, A Hard Day's Night and Help. The script, by Charles Wood (An Awfully Big Adventure) is based on a play by Ann Jellicoe. Future stars Jacqueline Bisset, Charlotte Rampling, and Jane Birkin appear briefly amid all the attractive young women in the film.

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Rita Tushingham
as Nancy Jones
William Dexter
as Dress Shop Owner
Charles Dyer
as Man in Photo Booth
Margot Thomas
as Female Teacher
Helen Lennox
as Blonde in Photo Booth
Peter Copley
as Picture Owner
Dandy Nichols
as Landlady
Frank Sieman
as Surveyor
Bruce Lacey
as Surveyor's Assistant
Edgar Wreford
as Man in Phone Booth
Wanda Ventham
as Gym Mistress
Gerald Toomey
as Boy in Classroom
Katherine Page
as Woman in House
Rose Hillier
as Unsuitable Customer
Charles Wood
as Soldier
Charlotte Rampling
as Water Skier
Lucy Bartlett
as Water Skier
Jane Birkin
as Girl on Motorbike
Marlo Thomas
as Female Teacher
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Critic Reviews for The Knack...And How to Get It

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (1)

The sets by television designer Assheton Gorton only emphasise one's earlier mystification that the British cinema has not made more use of his remarkable talents.

March 31, 2020 | Full Review…

The screenplay by Charles Wood (based on the play by Ann Jellicoe) is alive, written for the cinema with as many sight gags and visual trips as can be packed or stacked into the thin little story line.

February 4, 2020 | Full Review…

Mr. Lester uses the devices he used to such splendid effect in A Hard Day's Night. Only here they don't work so well. The Knack seems overdirected.

August 13, 2019 | Full Review…

The Knack... is yet another example of the danger of messing about with someone else's work, especially something so quirkishly self-contained and carefully planned as Ann Jellicoe's play.

January 23, 2018 | Full Review…

Lester's kooky-fey take on British alienation makes the Carry On movies look like Losey's The Servant

December 28, 2009 | Full Review…

Embarrassingly crude and dated Swinging Sixties tale.

March 23, 2007 | Rating: C- | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Knack...And How to Get It


Poor Michael Crawford needs help from his friend to get a girlfriend, at least he thinks he needs help. This movie is pretty funny most of the time, but it's not all that interesting, it's just entertaining.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer


Lively and extravagant sexual satire. Richard Lester's trademark blend of cinematic anarchism, surrealistic sketches and slap-stick comedy come perfectly in the backdrop of the swinging sixties London and its hedonistic inhabitants: mods and rockers coexisting with hostile hordes of middle-aged squares.

Pierluigi Puccini
Pierluigi Puccini

Super Reviewer

A quirky film, full of fun and silliness "swinging 60's" style! It has a Benny Hill meets Austin Powers sort of feel to it. As a fan of Ms. Tushingham I'll admit that my feelings are a little biased, but she is definately the glue here. Though the rest of the cast does a fine job as well. We were surprised to see several "up and comings stars pop up through out, including several future cast memebers from The Vicar Of Dibley! A very young John Bluthal (Frank) and someone who looked and sounded like a very young Roger Lloyd-Pack (Owen) as one of the (uncredited ?) who heckled Rita from the windows as she passed. In any case it's a fun little jaunt if you like films that are more style then substance.

Robert C
Robert C

Super Reviewer

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