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Norman Pitkin works for Mr Grimsdale in a butcher shop. When a robbery
wrong Mr Grimsdale is put into hospital to recover. While in the hospital
he and Norman decide that they have been `called' to serve as doctors.
While visiting Norman makes friends with a lonely young girl in the
children's wing, even giving her Mr Grimsdale's gold watch to cheer her
However a series of misunderstandings leads Sir Hector to ban Norman from
the hospital. However he tries many tricks to get in to visit the
Norman Wisdom films rarely surprise - you pretty much know what you're going to get and this is no different. Here his wide eyed innocent gets into a raft of comical misunderstandings around the hospital. His innocent act still works well and many of the set pieces are funny and well handled. The actual scenes with the little girl are too cute and sweet to be totally enjoyable but they do set up the usual `message' at the end - this one (as with so many others) allows Norman's working class fool to challenge the selfishness of the upper classes.
Wisdom is good, he still manages to carry off the likeable innocent. Wisdom regulars Jerry Desmonde and Edward Chapman are both good and as usual the rest of the cast is filled out by reasonable attractive girls eager to fall for Norman's charms.
Overall fans of Wisdom will not be disappointed and people who enjoy physical comedy with no nasty or cynical edges will find much gentle charm to enjoy here.
Once again, Norman Wisdom plays lovable klutz Norman Pitkin, raising
Cain wherever he goes. In this case, he works for Mr. Grimsdale (Edward
Chapman) in a meat store, when the place gets robbed. After a small
snafu, Grimsdale gets sent to the hospital, and Pitkin accompanies him.
In the hospital, Pitkin befriends orphan Lindy, but gets kicked out of
Anyway, the whole movie has Pitkin getting himself into a series of loony situations, all the while getting on everyone's nerves. He's the very manifestation of the triumph of the underdog, how he inadvertently trashes the snobbish rich people's mores. In this case, he has a drag race on Grimsdale's bed, and later has to dress up as a nurse after a sticky situation (which was probably inserted to appeal to teenage boys). The movie culminates in a musical performance unlike any that you've ever seen.
All in all, it's something that you're sure to like. And some of those nurses were really hot!
Very funny and surprisingly well made film. Norman Wisdom does not put a foot wrong, well he does but he's supposed to! What is particularly gratifying here is that whilst Wisdom is his brilliant self, everybody else puts in excellent and thoughtful performances. There is none of the 'prima donna' stuff we tend to get in the 'Carry On' films of the period and everybody is mainly interested in making themselves look good. Peter Jones, for instance puts in a magnificent performance as a St Johns Ambulance Brigade leader in a little scene that becomes central to the whole film. From the very beginning in the butcher's shop the slapstick is immaculate and typified by the hospital trolley race, Wisdom's tone is some magical mix of the male desire to prove himself and wanting to be a little boy again.
Even if the story is pretty standard and some parts get a little sentimental, A Stitch in Time is still a charming and funny slapstick comedy. A Stitch in Time is very well made, with nice cinematography and the film overall looks beautiful. The music by Phillip Green is beautiful as well, while there are some nice and funny touches in the screenplay. Not only that the set pieces are efficiently done and just add to the fun, with the slapstick very well timed. The pacing is just fine, the direction is good and the length I had no problem with either. And the acting is little to gripe about; Norman Wisdom is very winning in the title role, very innocent and likable, while Edward Chapman and Jerry Desmonde almost come close to stealing the film and Jeanette Sterke is really beautiful. Overall, classic slapstick comedy, that is very nice to watch while being funny as well. 8/10 Bethany Cox
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I love this film, it's a great piece of British film history, i've been
watching this (and many other Norman Wisdoms films) on video since i
was young, and yet, they still have there appeal to me like they did
all those years ago, and i think they'll stay that way!
In this film Norman Wisddom plays Norman Pitkin who works in a local butchers with the infamous Mr. Grimsdale, when they get overcome by a robber (i am unsure if he succeeds with the robbery or not, the last time i watched this film was in August!) anyway, Mr Grimsdale decides to hide his pocket watch in his mouth for safe keeping, but ends up swallowing it, so Norman calls the Ambulance to comes to help Mr. Grimsdale, with hilarious results (even the simplest things like putting him on a stretcher seem hard for Norman!)
When Mr Grimsdale is put in care, Norman gets barred from the Hospital because of a chase on electronic beds down the hospitals halls!!!
While hiding from the Hospital he finds this Little girl called Lindy whose parents were killed in ac plane crash, leaving her shocked and unable to speak, Norman immediately falls in love with her but being banned, he can't ever see her again, but knowing Norman he finds a way!
He decides to join the St. Johns Ambulance Bridage because they were to appear on Television, the perfect chance to get Lindy to see Norman, but Lindy is not allowed to watch TV as the show is on too late but Lindy escapes from the Hospital and makes her way to the location of Norman.
In the end they finally meet, but Norman thinks he's in the bad books because the person who owns the hospital, comes to thank Norman for his work (which i didn't mention) but Norman thinking he is mad, runs off outside and gets hit by a car, leaving him in hospital with Mr Grimsdale!
Overall i really enjoyed this film, one of Normans Best
This film really does highlight Norman Wisdom at his best and features
all the elements that made him such a fantastic screen clown.
Ably supported by Jerry Desmonde and Edward Chapman the film manages to feature all of the humour and the sentiment that make Wisdom's films so special. This one is particular shows him at his best because the sentiment is kept in check and there's none of the silly business of Norman playing multiple roles that perhaps bogged down his later outings.
Although it feels like a combination of sketches at times (Norman as a ST John's ambulance member, Norman as a nurse) they are brilliant ones, and there is enough of a plot to hold them all together. The scenes with Lindy are especially well written and it is perhaps this element that makes 'A Stitch in Time' my favourite of Norman's films.
A Stitch in Time is directed by Robert Asher and collectively written
by Jack Davies, Norman Wisdom, Henry Blyth and Eddie Leslie. It stars
Norman Wisdom, Edward Chapman, Jeanette Sterke and Jerry Desmonde.
Music is by Philip Green and cinematography by Jack Asher.
Although not prime Wisdom, A Stitch in Time holds the secrets as to what made the diminutive star so popular. Obviously his style of slapstick and malarkey for laughs isn't for everyone, but Wisdom's career blossomed because the feel good factor in his movies was always so high. While there was nearly always a sweet thread in his movies, but where the harsh would cite schmaltz or sappiness, others rightly point to honest escapism, a chance to forget the world and its troubles for a brief moment in time.
A Stitch in Time sees Wisdom as Norman Pitkin, the young assistant to Mr. Grimsdale (Chapman) at the town butchers. When Grimsdale is hospitalised Pitkin is determined to help wherever possible, which unfortunately means chaos will follow. This set-up allows Wisdom to indulge in a number of high spirited sequences involving motorised beds, teeth extractions, stretcher bearing, ambulance surfing, marching band chaos and even dressing up in drag. The "tender" sub-plot involves an orphan girl who after losing her parents in a plane crash, refuses to talk or smile, but Norman is on that case with the message being the innocence of unprejudiced kindness. That's that, really, all wrapped up in just under an hour and half of film.
Harmless and innocent fun for those who want to escape their blues. 7.5/10
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