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Doctor in Distress (1963)

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Ratings: 5.7/10 from 346 users  
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Dr. Simon Sparrow's love life improves dramatically when the lovely Delia Mallory is brought into casualty with a sprained ankle. She's relieved at the diagnosis as she is a dancer and is ... See full summary »



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Title: Doctor in Distress (1963)

Doctor in Distress (1963) on IMDb 5.7/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Delia Mallory
Barbara Murray ...
Iris Marchant - Physiotherapist
Sonia / Helga Stronberg (as Mylene Demongeot)
Maj. Tommy Ffrench
Jessie Evans ...
Mrs. Parry
Ann Lynn ...
Mrs. Whittaker
Harry Heilbronn
Rodney Cardiff ...
Student Doctor
Dr. Blacker
Fenella Fielding ...
Passenger on Train
Jill Adams ...
Paul Whitsun-Jones ...
Michael Flanders ...


Dr. Simon Sparrow's love life improves dramatically when the lovely Delia Mallory is brought into casualty with a sprained ankle. She's relieved at the diagnosis as she is a dancer and is as attracted to Sparrow as he is to her. Sparrow finds himself treating Sir Lancelot Spratt who has taken to sleep walking. He has also quite suddenly lost his gruff manner and is being quite nice to everyone. Sparrow quickly diagnoses Spratt's condition: he's fallen in love. The object of his affection is physiotherapist Iris Merchant. Sparrow urges him on but she also has another suitor in the form of Major Tommy Ffrench. Spratt tries to hire a private detective to follow her but when that doesn't work out he takes to following her himself. Mayhem ensues. Written by garykmcd

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It's that incurable 'DOCTOR' team in their NEWESTand SAUCIEST! [UK] See more »




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Release Date:

2 December 1963 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Doctor in Distress  »

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Followed by Carnaby, M.D. (1966) See more »

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User Reviews

Not that funny, but oddly satisfying
24 July 2009 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I was given this film on DVD as a birthday present, so sat down and gave it a go. I had seen a few of the other Doctor films and thought them gentle, inoffensive but ultimately unfunny. This one is very similar.

James Robertson Justice's irritable surgeon Sir Lancelot Spratt is the central character, with Dirk Bogarde as Dr Stephen Sparrow hovering about. It's really James Robertson Justice's performance that makes this film, with his wonderful fruity bark, and seeing him given the chance to show off other sides of his acting ability, coming over as a rather affable chap now and again.

Like a lot of these British comedy films, the plot is wafer-thin, you really have to suspend your disbelief, and ultimately it isn't really very funny at all.

But for me I came away with a satisfied smile on my face, having enjoyed the film for other reasons. The supporting cast is a real who's who of British screen acting, with people like Timothy Bateson, John Bluthal, Donald Houston and many others. Being a fan of Flanders and Swan, it was a nice surprise to see Michael Flanders as the food writer at the health farm.

My favourite scene is at the railway station, where rail buffs can ooh and ahh at British Railways-era carriages and locos, the history buffs at the posters for milk and rail rovers. There's also lots of street shots full of classic British cars, black-and-white striped sign posts and cafés where you can get beans on toast for 10d and fried egg, beans, chips and fried bread for the princely sum of 2/6! Not a great film, you sometimes find yourself pushing the fast forward button. But for James Robertson Justice, and as a kind of time capsule of early 60s Britain it's perfect.

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