Interesting that our Norm was paired opposite Millicent Martin, who was to be big in the forthcoming satire boom in England in the 1960s (and "That Was The Week" in particular). Quite why Wisdom took on this type of lead role is something of a mystery - cast as he was as one of the Bertie Wooster, PG Wodehouse, upper class, chinless wonder types. Yet he does remarkably well with, I have to say, not one of P.G.'s best offerings -even though the novel was given a makeover for the big screen by the improbably named Reuben Ship (a film and TV writer who penned scripts for, amongst others, Spike Milligan and Frankie Howerd). However, some of the rough edges of the dialog do grate somewhat, presumably in a vain attempt to keep faith with the Wodehouse original. On the printed page such exchanges can still sparkle. But on screen they run the risk of coming over as being about as sharp as the blunt end of a bread pudding. As when the Norman Wisdom character (Sam Marlowe), caught by a New York cop prancing around the street in his underwear (don't ask) says: "It's all right, officer, I'm English." And the cop replies: "Well, I'm Irish, so you'll have to come up with a better excuse than that." Wisdom and Martin are most ably supported by, in particular, Richard Briers, who starred in later sitcoms such as "Brothers In Law", "The Good Life", (you name it) playing the part of the Wisdom character's useless friend, Eustace Hignett (well, with a name like Eustace he would have to be useless, wouldn't he?). Though quite unlike any character he had played before (or was later to do) Wisdom does maintain the tradition of being a (somewhat unlikely) romantic lead. And although he was pushing fifty by then (compared to M.M. being well under thirty) he still comes across as comparatively youthful and was able to pull off a number of stunts both in and out of the water while managing to look convincing. But as to whether or not he actually gets the girl in this one - you'll just have to watch the movie and see for yourself.
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