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This movie debut for saucy British TV comic Benny Hill has Benny leaving his job as a sweeper after winning some money. He becomes a private detective and investigates a plot to assassinate British scientists. Written by
Steve Crook <email@example.com>
Benny Hill's big screen debut came in this modest production from Ealing Studios which seems to draw inspiration from Peter Sellers as Inspector Clouseau and Bob Hope from The Paleface. It's not a remake of Abbott and Costello's Who Done It from the early forties although both films involve Benny in his film and Bud and Lou in their's as newly minted private detectives.
But Benny makes Costello look like Sherlock Holmes. He gets hired to impersonate an Eastern European scientist visiting the United Kingdom, but the idea is to bump Benny off so the scientist can return to his country with a new weather machine which puts climate totally at man's control. Has Al Gore heard about this?
But all kinds of problems arise including the bad guys bumping off the real scientist whom they mistake for Benny. Nothing sophisticated in this film, it's one catastrophe after another for Ben, starting with him wrecking an Ice Capades Show and a chase reminiscent of that other Ealing classic, The Lavender Hill Mob.
Where The Paleface comes in is that Benny has an Amazonian girl friend aiding and abetting him and pulling him out of many scrapes the way Jane Russell did for Bob Hope. In Who Done It the Amazon is Belinda Lee who was definitely built along Jane Russell's measurements. For some reason Ms. Lee had a blond wig on for this film, I suppose so folks would view her as a British Marilyn Monroe.
Special mention must go to Garry Marsh playing the Scotland Yard inspector in the same manner patented later on by Herbert Lom as Inspector Dreyfus of the French Surete. His reaction shots are priceless.
Benny Hill's greatest success was on the small screen first in the United Kingdom and then in America when his shows were syndicated here. Nevertheless Who Done It is definitely a good example of his zany comedy style.
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