Norman wants to be a policeman like his father was, but he fails the height test (amongst others). One day he gets out his father's old uniform and "walks the beat". This leads to a level ... See full summary »
Norman and Mr Grimsdale are council workmen mending the road outside an Army base when they come into conflict with the military. Shortly afterwards, they get drafted and fall into the ... See full summary »
John Paddy Carstairs
Norman is the assistant helping to run a small, old fashioned dairy which is threatened by a larger, modern organisation. Norman does his best to save the dairy (and his horse) and the ... See full summary »
An accident in the butchers shop leads Norman and Mr Grimsdale to the hospital where, after causing the normal ammount of chaos, Norman finds Lindy, a little girl who hasn't spoken or ... 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 ... See full summary »
Norman is working in the stock room of a large London department store, but he has ambition (doesn't he always !!), he wants to be a window dresser making up the public displays. Whilst ... See full summary »
When a law-abiding demolition expert is duped by a gang of criminals into helping them he is caught and jailed. When he is released he goes straight and then notices a leading citizen in ... See full summary »
Norman wants to be a policeman like his father was, but he fails the height test (amongst others). One day he gets out his father's old uniform and "walks the beat". This leads to a level of chaos that only Norman could cause. Written by
Steve Crook <email@example.com>
When we first see Sgt. Wilkins she is walking into the salon. As she walks in we see that the backdrop of the street is in fact the same set which Norman entered in the opening scene which is used as the Police Station. See more »
"On the Beat" was among Norman Wisdom's later films and remains one of his best. In this outing, the ever-aspiring Norman Pitkin wants to be a policeman like his late father, but he is rejected for being too short. Undaunted, Norman goes for the police physical exam on a pair of stilts in one of the film's many hilarious skits. Still dreaming of a police career, Norman dons his dad's uniform and plays ball with a group of kids. During the game, he blows the police whistle, and mayhem not seen since the heydays of Mack Sennett and the Keystone Cops erupts throughout the town. The physical nature of Wisdom's comedy and the emphasis on visuals explain his broad appeal among non-English-speaking audiences, much like silent comedy attracted immigrant audiences in the United States.
As a bonus, "On the Beat" offers not one, but two Normans. Besides his on-screen persona, Pitkin, Wisdom also plays Giulio, an Italian gangster who poses as a hairdresser and uses his beauty salon as a front. Although the swishy mustached stereotype is dated and arguably offensive, Norman is too endearing and funny to be guilty of anything but going for a laugh. When Wisdom plays Norman the policeman impersonating Giulio the hairdresser the results are hysterical. Although Norman is nearly impossible to upstage, the pixie-like Esma Cannon as Norman's landlady, Mrs. Timms, manages to steal her scenes with delightful facial expressions and impish delivery. "On the Beat" is on the beat and strikes no false notes, providing a string of comic scenes that pay homage to silent comedy and generate tears of laughter.
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