HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Dreambuilders
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Scoob!
Earwig
Offseason
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Buffaloed
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Abominable
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Man in the Moon Striving For More
Year: 1960
Director: Basil Dearden
Stars: Kenneth More, Shirley Anne Field, Michael Hordern, Charles Gray, John Glyn-Jones, John Phillips, Norman Bird, Noel Purcell, Bernard Horsfall, Newton Blick, Bruce Boa, Ed Devereaux, Lionel Gamlin, Danny Green, Jeremy Lloyd, Russell Waters
Genre: ComedyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: William Blood (Kenneth More) awakens in bed one morning and sleepily opens his eyes to see the fields all around and the mooing cows, just as he expected from a man who has spent the night in the great outdoors. But here's something he did not anticipate: a young woman (Shirley Anne Field) who is dressed in high heels, a cocktail dress and feather boa, tottering across the grass towards him. It's a pleasant enough sight, but he has no idea what she is doing there, and as it turns out she's not about to tell him, not interested in conversation, but at least Blood is aware of his purpose in the fresh air: it is to catch a cold, as requested by the specialist research institute which is paying him.

There really was a special body for investigating the cure for the common cold back in 1960, and there is indeed still one in Britain, at Cardiff University, though whether it is anything like the manner in which it was depicted in this lighthearted comedy was a more dubious proposition. The institute here has such features as a wind machine blowing a biting breeze through the corridors and a room dedicated to rain, where test subjects sit under the droplets and try to catch a chill, all the better to be "researched", which should give you some idea of the irreverence of the film. It was in effect a vehicle for More to strut his humorous stuff, nothing too taxing, just a bit of fun.

As that opening sequence with his character trying to develop a cold indicated, he could play the bluff Englishman in his sleep, so there was a sense he was coasting through projects such as Man in the Moon, but ever the professional he was simply delivering to his countless British fans the sort of entertainment they wished to enjoy, though as the nineteen-sixties dawned he was starting to give way to a new breed of film star, more gritty and earthy than his cheerily urbane persona. Nevertheless, as a movie to watch on a rainy Sunday afternoon when you did not have much else to do, this was the very dab, easy to consume, a spot of escapism from the days before man had actually set foot on our moon.

This was often lumped in with the era's science fiction works, and though there was a space rocket in it, it wasn't interested in exploring the lunar surface: Blood didn't even enter his space capsule until the story was pretty much over, leading to a punchline that you may or may not have seen coming a mile off. The fantastical element was actually closer to Blood's physical condition, and even that was a joke of sorts, as he has never suffered a day's illness in his life, his constitution is remarkably robust, so he is picked to join up for the British space programme and set to training along with a selection of the finest specimens the scientists could find (including Charles Gray with dark hair).

What they do not do is mention to Blood the ultimate goal for putting him through the tests, fearing the danger will put him off, though holiday camp tycoon Billy Butlin (who did not appear) has put up a hundred thousand pounds as an incentive for the Brits beating their rivals to our largest satellite. This leads to a subplot about Gray trying to kill our oblivious hero (!) by sabotaging equipment, including a G-force simulator in a scene lifted by Moonraker almost twenty years later, which was apt because Nikki Van Der Zyl, famed Bond Girl voice artiste, dubbed Field here. Speaking of Field, she wasn't exactly stretched by her role here as the eye candy, a stripper who we never see strip (her Eskimo outfit, or lack of it, may raise eyebrows, however), but she did have an effect on Blood when he falls for her and finds himself sneezing when he feels romantic, an Achilles heel that is made surprisingly little of. With lots of daft lines and throwaway gags, it was apparent that everyone was simply diverting themselves with a bit of fluff, and on that level Man in the Moon sufficed. Music by Philip Green.

[Network offers a restored print from its The British Film selection, with the trailer and a vast gallery as extras.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3091 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Basil Dearden  (1911 - 1971)

Dependable British director who began his film career working on Will Hay comedies like My Learned Friend, then moved onto a range of drama and comedy: a segment of classic horror Dead of Night, important crime film The Blue Lamp, The Smallest Show on Earth, excellent heist story The League of Gentlemen, social issues film Victim, action spectaculars Khartoum and The Assassination Bureau and quirky horror The Man Who Haunted Himself. Sadly, Dearden died in a car crash.

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: