They Knew Mr. Knight (film)

They Knew Mr. Knight is a 1946 British drama film directed by Norman Walker and starring Mervyn Johns, Nora Swinburne and Joyce Howard.[1] It was based on a 1934 novel of the same title by Dorothy Whipple. A man is sentenced to twelve months in Lincoln jail following his involvement in a share scam, plunging himself and his family into despair. However, by the time of his release he is able to face his uncertain future with fortitude.

They Knew Mr. Knight
British quad poster
Directed byNorman Walker
Produced byNorman Walker
Written byVictor MacLure
Norman Walker
Based onthe novel by Dorothy Whipple
StarringMervyn Johns
Nora Swinburne
Joyce Howard
Joan Greenwood
Music byJohn Greenwood
CinematographyErwin Hillier
Edited bySam Simmonds
Distributed byGeneral Film Distributors
Release date
4 March 1946
Running time
93 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

The film was made by Norman Walker's G.H.W. Productions, funded by the Rank Organisation, at Denham Studios. It suffered a financial loss on its release and it was the last of four films that Walker made for Rank.[2]


Critical reception

The Radio Times gave the film two out of five stars, and wrote, "director Norman Walker rather wallows in this glum middle-class morality tale. But he prudently cashes in on Johns's fretful features and the solid support provided by Nora Swinburne and Joan Greenwood, as his wife and self-sacrificing daughter."[3]


  1. "They Knew Mr. Knight". BFI.
  2. Murphy p.66
  3. David Parkinson. "They Knew Mr Knight". RadioTimes.


  • Murphy, Robert. Realism and Tinsel: Cinema and Society in Britain 1939-48. Routledge, 1992.
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