Norman is the oldest orphan at Greenwood Children's Home and now acts as their caretaker. All the orphans are very happy and well cared for. The adventures start when a nasty property ... See full summary »
Norman is the oldest orphan at Greenwood Children's Home and now acts as their caretaker. All the orphans are very happy and well cared for. The adventures start when a nasty property developer (boo hiss) who is also the chairman of the orphanage board wants to close the orphanage and build a factory on the site. The children are sent to Brighton for the day and Norman is very excited because he's "Never seen the Sea". When they get back they discover the plan to close the orphanage and have to decide what to do. Written by
Steve Crook <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Wisdom carries the whole film one of his better vehicles
Norman is the oldest orphan at Greenwood's orphanage who now works there in return for free board. Norman is always trying to give the orphans a good life but all that is threatened when Mr Bigley announces he is going to sell the property for industrial use, Norman takes action to prevent the sale.
I'm not a huge Wisdom fan but I have seen many of this films. So I know that I do enjoy his brand of humour and know he can be really funny in a gentle way when the film allows him to be. Here the basic plot is only a step to several funny scenes Norman entered in a walking race, Norman fleeing the police in a toy car, Norman in a train carriage with a group of upper-class stiffs etc. Most of the film is little to do with the plot described above. It's only the final scene where the orphans repel the adults that brings it back to the central idea, however that doesn't mean it's no good. My personal favourite is the scene where Norman gets mistaken for a conductor because he's holding a candy floss stick and gets bungled in front of an orchestra at a concert- again little to do with the plot, but still funny!
The actual set-ups for Wisdom to do his stuff are all pretty funny and don't feel forced despite not fitting naturally into the plot. The humour is gentle and when Norman is doing it he really gives his all. He'll never be respected like some other comedians but here he shows that he is a genius and can work gags well in his own style. In other films he has suffered from a lack of a good support cast, but here he is pretty much carrying the whole thing and does it very well. Some may dislike the cute kids aspect of the film but it's only the end where they get much input. Rice and Abicair are OK but it's nice to see a young Thora Hird before her stair-lift adverts paid her way!
Overall this is funny, gentle comedy Wisdom style. Those that hate his basic style will dislike this but fans will love it and it's good enough to win over new viewers. Definitely one of Wisdom's better films and that's without the sterling support of regular's Desmonde and Chapman.
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