HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Cryptozoo
Weathering with You
Rim of the World
Love & Basketball
JLA Adventures: Trapped in Time
Trapped
We Need to Do Something
Falbalas
Vanguard
A-X-L
Injustice
Bigfoot Hunters
Armitage III: Polymatrix
Girls Nite Out
Moxie!
Five Women for the Killer
Dolce Vita, La
Pig
I Am Belmaya
Lodger, The
Show, The
Beta Test, The
Medium, The
John and the Hole
Survivalist, The
Ape Woman, The
Black Widow
Cop Secret
Dark Eyes of London, The
V/H/S/94
Fay Grim
Night of the Animated Dead
Freshman Year
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions
Anne at 13,000 Ft.
Even Mice Belong in Heaven
Death Screams
Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr.
Demonia
East, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Hungary for Cartoons: Hungarian Animations on MUBI
You Have No Choice: Invasion of the Body Snatchers on Blu-ray
You Can't Tame What's Meant to Be Wild: The Howling on Blu-ray
Commendably Brief: Short Sharp Shocks Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Super Silents: Early Universal Vol. 2 on Blu-ray
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
   
 
  Up Pompeii Sandals And Scandals
Year: 1971
Director: Bob Kellett
Stars: Frankie Howerd, Michael Hordern, Patrick Cargill, Barbara Murray, Bill Fraser, Lance Percival, Julie Ege, Adrienne Posta, Royce Mills, Madeline Smith, Russell Hunter, Kenneth Cranham, Bernard Bresslaw, Aubrey Woods, Roy Hudd, Derek Griffiths, Lally Bowers
Genre: Comedy, Sex, HistoricalBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 3 votes)
Review: The Roman Empire is at its height, and the citizens of Pompeii spend all the time they can enjoying themselves - except for the slaves, that is, including Lurcio (Frankie Howerd), who is busy preparing an orgy for his master Ludicrus (Michael Hordern). While at the market to buy food and women for the festivities, Lurcio gets into an argument with Centurion Bilius (Lance Percival); he escapes after his groceries have been tipped out of their basket, but in his haste, he accidentally picks up a scroll instead of a cucumber, which has the names of an assassination plot written on it...

This saucy comedy was written by Sid Colin, and it's no surprise that Talbot Rothwell had the idea behind it, as it does come across as a broader version of one of the historical Carry On movies. It was based on the successful BBC sitcom, a vehicle for the inimitable Howerd, and was one of the many films based on sitcoms that appeared in the seventies, all with the intention of propping up the ailing British film industry by putting on cruder versions of what was popular among television audiences.

As narrator and main character, Howerd doesn't let one double entendre go by without a knowing look to the camera - as he says, you have to be careful what you say around there. He is in the privileged position of being the most self-aware character, never letting you forget the artificiality of the set up (as if the studio-bound locations weren't obvious enough) and always ready with a quip or a long-suffering remark.

The jokes are as old as Pompeii itself, they even do the "Would you like me to dip your bread in my gravy?" prison gag, and every possible sexual connotation is mined. You can't say "It's about this long" or "I wonder if I dare show it to her?" without Lurcio taking it the wrong way, so to speak, and of course he also makes his share of off-colour quips. A Christian will say, "I was thrown to lions once," and Lurcio will respond, "What happened? Did Nero have his thumb up? I'll rephrase that...", or the soothsayer will wail, "All will soon be revealed!" and Lurcio will observe, "It certainly will if you don't let go of my knickers!"

So the humour is forced, but Howerd's delivery is impeccable, even if it's all a bit too desperate in its bid to appeal to the adults. Up Pompeii takes every chance to revel in the decadence of Ancient Rome, because the light-hearted approach takes the edge off the orgies, fleeting nudity and murders. It's only when it gets to the end, when what famously befell the city finally happens, does it seem conservative, as if the citizens are being punished for their loose morals - you can't really have a bawdy romp where everyone dies at the end. You might be better off with A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, but the cast here is seasoned enough to wring sufficient laughs out of the creaky material. Music by Carl Davis. Followed by two variations: Up the Chastity Belt and Up the Front.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 14521 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


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
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: