HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Pusher
Pot Carriers, The
Black Bear
Don't Cry, Pretty Girls!
Portal
Me You Madness
Reckoning, The
Laddie: The Man Behind the Movies
For the Sake of Vicious
Hell Bent
Straight Shooting
Jules Verne's Rocket to the Moon
Man They Could Not Hang, The
Final Days
Frightened City, The
Assimilate
Sequin in a Blue Room
Common Crime, A
Into the Labyrinth
Power, The
Wake of Death
Night Orchid
Mortal
Iron Mask, The
Dinosaur
Personal History of David Copperfield, The
Dove, The
Collective
Charulata
Minari
Violation
Defending Your Life
Champagne Murders, The
He Dreams of Giants
Lost in America
Take Back
Honeydew
Banishing, The
Drifters, The
Gushing Prayer
   
 
Newest Articles
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
Toons for the Heads: Fantastic Planet and Adult Animation
Nature Girl: The New World on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Perfect Friday and Robbery
   
 
  I Only Arsked! Harem Scarum
Year: 1958
Director: Montgomery Tully
Stars: Bernard Bresslaw, Michael Medwin, Alfie Bass, Geoffrey Sumner, Charles Hawtrey, Norman Rossington, David Lodge, Arthur Howard, Marne Maitland, Michael Bentine, Francis Matthews, Michael Ripper, Wolfe Morris, Ewan MacDuff, Marie Devereux
Genre: ComedyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: Orders have arrived from on high to post a selection of soldiers and their commanding officer to a small Middle Eastern country whose King is desperately searching for oil on his territory. Back in Britain, an out of the way army camp receives the orders, and the Major (Geoffrey Sumner) is dismayed that he will have to leave his pet pig behind - his wife, he's not so bothered about. Accompanying him will be the Sergeant Major (David Lodge), but to garner the five soldiers needed, he fools them into thinking they are volunteering for a dance. "Never volunteer for anything" was the code Corporal Springer (Michael Medwin) lived by, and when they find out they've been tricked, the soldiers are not amused...

It all started here: the British sitcom movie. And appropriately it was a Hammer production, considering they would go on to adapt some of the most successful sitcoms during the nineteen-seventies, including the On the Buses films. Here the original Granada series was The Army Game and some, but not all, of the cast returned for the movie version of what was already a smash hit on television, with the title coming from one of the catchphrases of the terminallly dim Private Popplewell (Bernard Bresslaw) - you'll be glad that it's held over until the last line of the film.

Scripted by Sid Colin and Jack Davies, I Only Arsked! was an example of a once-popular genre that fell by the wayside in British film, the army comedy. Since National Service was scrapped, perhaps not enough of the potential audience had gone through the military experience, and nowadays the Army doesn't seem quite as funny anymore, so it's doubtful we'll see a return, except as a Private's Progress style of the more satirical tale. But let's not forget the first Carry On movie was Carry On Sergeant, an effort not a million miles away from this.

Not that I Only Arsked! hits those heights. Once our heroes reach the Middle East the British ambassador (Arthur Howard) cannot hide his disappointment at the tiny number of them, especially as the natives are restless. I say natives, but they're played by white actors with dusky makeup on, and this being a Hammer film, even Michael Ripper gets to appear in blackface. What follows is the soldiers wanting to go home until they find out the King's harem is nearby, whereupon they find a secret passageway there that makes their stay go a lot easier. There are a handful of easy chuckles, although this is pretty obviously a TV project; that's not to say it's unenjoyable, but it's only mild entertainment at best. Its minor place in cinematic history is assured, of course. Music by Benjamin Frankel, and star Alfie Bass contributes his own tearfully homesick song as well.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3783 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
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
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
Stately Wayne Manor
   

 

Last Updated: