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
   
 
  Penny Points to Paradise What The World Needs Is More Silly Men
Year: 1951
Director: Tony Young
Stars: Harry Secombe, Alfred Marks, Peter Sellers, Paddie O'Neil, Spike Milligan, Bill Kerr, Freddie Frinton, Vicki Page, Joe Linnane, Sam Kydd
Genre: ComedyBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Harry Flakers (Harry Secombe) has recently won a fortune on the pools, but he isn't going to allow his newfound wealth to go to his head and goes on holiday to his usual haunt, a guest house in Brighton, with his best friend Spike Donnelly (Spike Milligan). They suffer a few minor setbacks on the journey there, as when Harry accidentally sticks his suitcase over Spike's head, or when they end up being taken to their destination in a taxi that is positively ancient and liable to break down at any minute, but surely there can't be anything else to put a spanner in the works of their trip?

For quite some time Penny Points to Paradise was believed lost, or at the very least out of circulation and likely to stay that way, which was a shame as it caught three of the groundbreaking Goons comedy team just before they shot to fame on the radio. Although this was not written by the stars, as John Osmonde carried those duties according to the credits, there are flashes of the lunacy that they brought to their more famous work, especially as the plot frequently halts to allow them to act out one of their stage routines, but it's interesting to spot the differences and similarities between the efforts here and what came along later.

Peter Sellers is there too, playing two roles although the Major gets far more screen time than the salesman, who is Canadian for no other reason than to show off Sellers' gift for accents. The Major seems a familiiar part for the actor to play, his accustomed version of the old duffer who amusingly makes mistakes, getting Harry and Spike mixed up or contributing the running gag (run into the ground, in fact) about thinking sponduliks is not slang for cash, but actually a serious ailment. It's no secret that Sellers thought this film was dreadful, but the passing of time has offered it a fresh intrigue.

Milligan especially doesn't quite seem himself, declining to speak in a funny voice and sounding far more sober and sensible than many will be used to; he's pretty much the straight man here, which doesn't really suit him. The storyline is perfunctory at best, concerned with counterfeiter Alfred Marks and his Australian co-conspirator Bill Kerr (from Hancock's Half Hour, also on the radio), both of whom are determined to get Harry's winnings away from him and cunningly replace them with their forged bank notes. As Harry doesn't trust banks and keeps his winnings in a suitcase, this will be easier than it seems.

To complicate matters, there are two women in Harry and Spike's lives, one of whom, Paddie O'Neil, is a gold digger out to marry the winner for his money; she gets to play out part of her impressionist act, just to add to the revue feel of a lot of this. In truth, although not the disaster Sellers believed, too much of the humour falls flat in obvious punchlines or over eager routines designed to pad this out to (barely) feature length. While there are still moments to have you laughing out loud, it's just that most of these don't occur during the setpieces such as the grand finale that sees a hectic chase around Brighton, ending up in a wax museum with predictable "dressing up to impersonate the dummies" results. Of additional interest is a rare film appearance by Freddie Frinton, of Continental New Year favourite Dinner for One fame, and the experience is painless at worst, a genuine item of comedy history at best. Music by Milligan and Jack Jordan.

[The BFI have re-released this film along with two other Sellers rarities on one Blu-ray or DVD.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 2533 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: