HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Truth, The
Good Die Young, The
Old Guard, The
Gumnaam
Disappearance at Clifton Hill
Sullivans, The
Piranhas
Love in the Afternoon
Black Water: Abyss
Wild Blue Yonder, The
All Hail the Popcorn King
Muriel, or the Time of Return
Selma
Great Locomotive Chase, The
American Anthem
Lion and the Horse, The
Druids
War of the Wizards
Onward
Doctor Faustus
Spite Marriage
Mask, The
Letter to Jane
Quick Millions
Dream Demon
Max Havelaar
Radioactive
Glastonbury Fayre
All Dogs Go to Heaven
Shoot Out
Da 5 Bloods
Sonatine
Kung Fu Monster
Secret Agent Super Dragon
Saint Frances
Boiling Point
Golden Stallion, The
Dragon Force
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch
Luck of Ginger Coffey, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Divine Madness: Female Trouble on Blu-ray
Country Matters: Further Out of Town on Blu-ray
Bat-Damn: Was Joel Schumacher's Batman Really That Bad?
The Beat Goes On: Takeshi Kitano Collection on Blu-ray
Dream Treats: Scorsese Shorts on Blu-ray
It's Only Money: Laughter in Paradise on Blu-ray
A Regular Terpsichore: Dance, Girl, Dance on Blu-ray
Teenage Trauma: Baby Love on Blu-ray
The Happening: Pet Shop Boys It Couldn't Happen Here on Blu-ray
Who Watched The Watchmen?
The Golden Age of Colonic Irrigation: Monty Python Series 4 on Blu-ray
Lady of Pleasure: Lola Montes on Blu-ray
Take You to the Gay Bar: Funeral Parade of Roses on Blu-ray
Hit for Ms: Mark Cousins' Women Make Film on Blu-ray
Look Sinister: The 1000 Eyes of Dr. Mabuse on Blu-ray
Star Wars Triple Threat: The Tricky Third Prequel and Sequel
I Can See for Miles: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes on Blu-ray
Too Much Pressure: The Family Way on Blu-ray
The Alan Key: Alan Klein and What a Crazy World on Blu-ray
A Japanese Ghost Story: Kwaidan on Blu-ray
The Zu Gang: Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain on Blu-ray
Reality TV: The Year of the Sex Olympics on DVD
The Young and the Damned: They Live By Night on Blu-ray
Mind How You Go: The Best of COI on Blu-ray
Der Kommissar's in Town: Babylon Berlin Series 3 on DVD
   
 
  Orders are Orders Never Mind The Barracks
Year: 1954
Director: David Paltenghi
Stars: Brian Reece, Margot Grahame, Raymond Huntley, Sid James, Tony Hancock, Peter Sellers, Clive Morton, June Thorburn, Maureen Swanson, Peter Martyn, Bill Fraser, Edward Lexy, Barry MacKay, Donald Hewlett, Michael Trubshawe, Donald Pleasence, Eric Sykes
Genre: ComedyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: Another day at the army base for Captain Harper (Brian Reece), and another day of hearing that same tune played by the marching band led by Lieutenant Cartroad (Tony Hancock) who is intent on practicing at every possible opportunity for the big contest that is drawing nearer. As Harper enters the officer's mess, he is accosted by Veronica (June Thorburn), the daughter of the Colonel (Raymond Huntley), who is sort of his girlfriend. Despite this, when she asks him to take her into the village to meet the American film company there he refuses - but those moviemakers will be the source of much confusion...

That is because they want to use the base to shoot their latest science fiction epic there, something about invading Martians although if you can actually work out what that plot is meant to be, you're a better man than I - or a better Martian. Orders are Orders was a remake of an earlier film from the thirties, Orders is Orders (notice the subtle difference there), which in turn was based on a play, but if anyone who has seen both has a preference, they'll probably go for the first version.

Yet this one has features of interest, and they all rest on that cast, including as it does some stars who would become mainstays of the British comedy scene for years to come. In the credits it says that one Eric Sykes was responsible for additional dialogue, and one must assume that he wrote the handful of amusing lines, for there's not much to laugh at here. Sykes, then best known for his career in radio comedy scripting, is rewarded with a short scene here that saw him make his screen debut - he's the one with the cymbals.

Achieving larger roles are some other notables, such as Hancock also making his debut and presumably affording many radio fans their first chance to see him in action rather than simply hearing him, and he is well cast, wringing some humour out of material that was beneath his talents. Also worth mentioning was Peter Sellers, who frustratingly shares no scenes with Hancock, but suggests the producers were trawling the BBC for their cast; Sellers here is dimwitted and along with Bill Fraser has to wear one of the least flattering costumes of his career when cast as an extra in the sci-fi film.

Look out, too for Donald Pleasence (his name gets possibly the worst misspelling he ever received in the end credits) in a bit part. If Orders are Orders sounds better off as a film for star spotters than as a riproaring gagfest, then sad to say that's true, as while the plot is busy with incident, it does grow longwinded by the time it is trying to sort out all of the narrative threads it has conjured up. Sid James plays the director with one of his ill-advised American accents, and if you're unsure of his character's name it gets helpfully repeated about five billion times by the others. The trappings of the film within the film are entertaining, and it does go to illiustrate how the one thing better than showbiz for soldiers in nineteen-fifties Britain was the opposite sex, but it runs round in circles without really getting anywhere. Music by Stanley Black.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3357 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 is the best at shouting?
Arnold Schwarzenegger
Brian Blessed
Tiffany Haddish
Steve Carell
Olivia Colman
Captain Caveman
Sylvester Stallone
Gerard Butler
Samuel L. Jackson
Bipasha Basu
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
Andrew Pragasam
  Mick Stewart
Enoch Sneed
  Dsfgsdfg Dsgdsgsdg
  Hannah Prosser
   

 

Last Updated: