3 March 2001 | foz-3
More violent than the TV series, but a must for fans
This film is rarely shown and so it was a treat to watch it the other day. The first thing you notice is the liberal use of the f-word which probably did the film no favours in the 1970's as the TV series was watched, in the main, by under 15's. In fact the general level of violence has been greatly increased in this film spin-off, especially towards the end when the shootings, explosions and subsequent body count goes off the scale.
There are also liberal views and references to women's breasts (a nod towards the predominantly male audience). However, the old formula of the tv series that enderes it to so many 20-30 somethings still permeates the film. This includes car chases, scraps, extremely non-PC moments, and amusingly comic overtones, especially the odd scene where the bomb squad and sweeney have a booze-up in a hotel knowing that a device is being defused in one of the rooms (an incident that today would plaster the front pages of the newspapers for months afterwards). Reagan and Carter are a brilliant double act and their supporting colleagues (especially the scruffy, nose picking, Welsh DC Jellyneck) give an air of "Keystone cops" to the whole film. Mention must be made of the dreadful 70's fashions that always added to the enjoyment and interest of the series. Lots of famous supporting cast including Denholm Elliot in a small role as a corrupt ex chief inspector.