11 January 2018 | stephenabell
Not The Best English Comedy - But Has Lots Of Good Scenes.
This is a classic English comedy as the surreal opening sequence will show. We start with a lovely pan through the English countryside and end up a four poster iron bed, which is fully made in the middle of a field. When you're wondering what the hell is happening, out pops William (brilliantly portrayed by Kenneth More), who then has a nut dropped on him from a passing squirrel... But it only gets stranger when a beautiful and glamorous woman comes across the stream on stepping stones. She ignores William when he speaks to her and as she clambers over the style we see an approaching vehicle. When the land rover pulls up we realise that William is out on the field trying to catch a common cold. It's William's great good health that sets him on the route to being the first man on the moon.
You have to remember that this movie was made in the '60's so most of the technology within the story is now incorrect and, at times, laughable. What made this such a good film for me was the acting. As not only do we have the great Kenneth More, who I can listen to and watch all day, but Shirley Anne Field is so beautiful and plays Polly brilliantly, then there's Norman Bird and Michael Hordern who add gravitas to the film.
Secondly, there's the story which is well written with lots of believable and funny narrative along with realistic characterisations. For me, this is the way that comedy works best. Keep the characters solid and make the lines and situations comedic. Today, too many writers and directors like to have wacky characters - though, on the whole, they appear juvenile and pretty stupid.
This isn't the best comedy, though it did raise a few smiles and laughs. I would gladly recommend this for an afternoons or evenings entertainment.