Follow TV Tropes

Following

History Film / TheManWhoCouldWorkMiracles

Go To



''The Man Who Could Work Miracles'' is a black-and-white 1936 British fantasy-comedy film directed by the German-born American director Lothar Mendes. It is a greatly expanded version of Creator/HGWells’s short story of the same name and stars Roland Young with a cast of supporting players including Creator/RalphRichardson.

As a result of a discussion between a trio of gods over the true worthiness of Earth, a retiring British shop assistant is granted miraculous powers. George [=McWhirter=] Fotheringay's new powers are virtually limitless. Choosing to use them for good, Fotheringay sets out to create a utopian society.

to:

''The Man Who Could Work Miracles'' is a black-and-white 1936 British fantasy-comedy film directed by the German-born American director Lothar Mendes. It is a greatly expanded version of Creator/HGWells’s short story of the same name (with Wells also getting a script credit) and stars Roland Young with a cast of supporting players including Creator/RalphRichardson.

As a result of a discussion between a trio of gods over the true worthiness of Earth, a retiring British shop assistant is randomly chosen and granted miraculous powers. George [=McWhirter=] Fotheringay's new powers are virtually limitless. Choosing to use them for good, Fotheringay sets out to create a utopian society.



* ToHellAndBack: Happens entirely unintentionally to Constable Winch. Fotheringay tells him to "go to blazes!" and his RealityWarper powers cause Winch to vanish and reappear in a FireAndBrimstoneHell. When Fotheringay realises what has happened, he panics. Not wanting to bring Winch back to Essex and face his wrath, he instead sends to Winch San Francisco: figuring that will be far enough away to spare him any immediate consequences.

to:

* ToHellAndBack: Happens entirely unintentionally to Constable Winch. Fotheringay tells him to "go to blazes!" and his RealityWarper powers cause Winch to vanish and reappear in a FireAndBrimstoneHell. When Fotheringay realises what has happened, he panics. Not wanting to bring Winch back to Essex and face his wrath, he instead sends to Winch to San Francisco: figuring that will be far enough away to spare him any immediate consequences.


* WallOfWepons: Colonel Winstanley has an entire room decked out in weaponry from around the world: souvenirs of his career as a soldier. At TheVicar's urging, Fotheringay transforms them all into agricultural equipment.

to:

* WallOfWepons: WallOfWeapons: Colonel Winstanley has an entire room decked out in weaponry from around the world: souvenirs of his career as a soldier. At TheVicar's urging, Fotheringay transforms them all into agricultural equipment.


* StoryBreakerPower: George [=McWhirter=] Forthingay suddenly discovers that he can do anything simply by declaring it to be so. Some of his miracles have [[LiteralGenie unintended consequences]] and he ends up breaking, not the story, but the ''planet''. Only [[spoiler:hitting the ResetButton]] saves everyone.

to:

* StoryBreakerPower: George [=McWhirter=] Forthingay Fotheringay suddenly discovers that he can do anything simply by declaring it to be so. Some of his miracles have [[LiteralGenie unintended consequences]] and he ends up breaking, not the story, but the ''planet''. Only [[spoiler:hitting the ResetButton]] saves everyone.


Added DiffLines:

* WallOfWepons: Colonel Winstanley has an entire room decked out in weaponry from around the world: souvenirs of his career as a soldier. At TheVicar's urging, Fotheringay transforms them all into agricultural equipment.


* RealityWarpingIsNotAToy: When Fotheringay initially becomes a RealityWarper, his first experiments with his power are modest, such as summoning exotic fruit. However, after being persuaded to use his power for the greater good, [[WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity he quickly slips into megalomania]]. He starts using his power with out concern for the consequences. He changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons all the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil. Eventually, he commands to the Earth to stop rotating. He fails to consider the basic physics of the rotation of the planet and so sends his palace, all living creatures and objects whirling off the world's surface.



* WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.

to:

* WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons all the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.


* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: At the climax of the film, Fotheringay buys some time by making the Earth stop rotating. Alas, he fails to consider the basic physics of the rotation of the planet and so sends his palace, all living creatures and objects whirling off the world's surface. Civilization and all life (save Fotheringay) are obliterated as everything in the world flies through the air and is dashed to pieces.

to:

* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: At the climax of the film, Fotheringay buys some time by making the Earth stop rotating. Alas, he fails to consider the basic physics of the rotation of the planet and so sends his palace, all living creatures and objects whirling off the world's surface. Civilization and all life (save Fotheringay) are is obliterated as everything in the world flies through the air and is dashed to pieces.pieces.
* ExtremelyShortTimespan: The film encompasses about 48 hours. At the end Fotheringay presses the ResetButton, and everything rewinds to the start, meaning that--in one sense--only a few minutes pass.



to:

* WithGreatPowerComesGreatInsanity: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.

Added DiffLines:

* WalkingShirtlessScene: The three angels/gods do not wear shirts.

Added DiffLines:

* DrunkWithPower: Even after gaining the ability to work miracles, Fotherigay remains rather restrained in the use of his powers as he tries to figure out the best way to use them. However, after working out that everyone is trying to use him, he snaps and starts using his powers without restraint. He demolishes Colonel Winstanley's home; constructs an elaborate palce for himself in its place; summons Maggie to serve as his queen, and Ada to serve as eye candy (and perhaps mistress); brings the world's leaders to him to bow down; etc.

Added DiffLines:

* MonochromeCasting: Understandable for a film set among middle class England in the 1930s. However, towards the end of the film, Fotheringay uses his powers to summon all of the world's leaders--temporal and spiritual--to his palace. Logically this should have included a diverse range of races, but only white faces are visible, even in the group shots.


''The Man Who Could Work Miracles'' is a black-and-white 1937 British fantasy-comedy film directed by the German-born American director Lothar Mendes. It is a greatly expanded version of Creator/HGWells’s short story of the same name and stars Roland Young with a cast of supporting players including Creator/RalphRichardson.

to:

''The Man Who Could Work Miracles'' is a black-and-white 1937 1936 British fantasy-comedy film directed by the German-born American director Lothar Mendes. It is a greatly expanded version of Creator/HGWells’s short story of the same name and stars Roland Young with a cast of supporting players including Creator/RalphRichardson.


* AdaptionExpansion: Expands on the adventures of the eponymous George [=McWhirter=] Fotheringay (and gives an explicit source to his sudden powers).

to:

* AdaptionExpansion: AdaptationExpansion: Expands on the adventures of the eponymous George [=McWhirter=] Fotheringay (and gives an explicit source to his sudden powers).

Added DiffLines:

* LiteralGenie: Fotheringay has no understanding of his powers work, and learns that he must be careful when issuing commands or they may come true in a very literal fashion. For example, his telling Constable Winch to "go to blazes!" results in the unfortunate policeman beings sent to a FireAndBrimstoneHell.

Added DiffLines:

* AdaptionExpansion: Expands on the adventures of the eponymous George [=McWhirter=] Fotheringay (and gives an explicit source to his sudden powers).


* GoGoEnslavement: When Fotheringay summons Ada to appear before him in his newly created palace, he dresses her in the sexy Cleopatra outfit he had created for her earlier.



* PoerCorrupts: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.

to:

* PoerCorrupts: PowerCorrupts: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.


Added DiffLines:

* StoryBreakerPower: George [=McWhirter=] Forthingay suddenly discovers that he can do anything simply by declaring it to be so. Some of his miracles have [[LiteralGenie unintended consequences]] and he ends up breaking, not the story, but the ''planet''. Only [[spoiler:hitting the ResetButton]] saves everyone.

Added DiffLines:

* PoerCorrupts: Realizing that others, even TheVicar, wish to exploit him for their own ends, Fotheringay decides not to trigger a Golden Age after all, but instead to create an old-fashioned kingdom in which he is the centre of the universe. In a fit of reckless pompousness, he changes the Colonel's house into a spectacular palace of real gold and marble. He then summons up all the pretty girls, not to mention the Colonel's entire regiment, dressed as Beefeaters, after which he summons the butlers in Essex, the leaders of the world, the teachers, musicians, priests, etc. He dresses up like a king and appoints the girl he loves as queen, then commands the leaders of the world to create a utopia, free of greed, war, plague, famine, jealousy, and toil.

Showing 15 edit(s) of 28

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report