Review

  • This film is not meant to be taken seriously, but is a thoroughly enjoyable romp, with a lot of humour. I watch my recording from time to time, and still laugh at it.

    I particularly liked the way that Col. Raymond explained to Ferguson that the Germans are developing a secret weapon that could change the outcome of WWI, as though the war is still taking place, rather than being long over. This film gave the feeling that the past is still just as real as the present, and is somehow happening at the same time - spooky!

    The background music was excellent: the "So you want to be a hero?!" piece as the biplanes streaked along just over the ground, woods on both sides, was marvelous.

    The supporting characters of Algy, Bertie and Ginger seemed to fit so well with the old Capt. W.E. Johns stories - the actors really looked the part. Neil Dickson was excellent as the brave but human British hero who, when Von Stalheim proposes a toast "To War", replies "To Peace". The film definitely captured some of the "Boy's Own" era of British story-telling, when the heroes were bold, resourceful and always ready to have a go at the enemy, regardless of the odds or the danger - but always remained polite and courteous.

    I really don't understand why this film bombed out at the box-office; after all, we have all seen far worse films which did much better. Perhaps the name "Biggles" is too British to attract an American audience, who don't have the nostalgic fondness for the character that we who read the books in our youth have?