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Joey Boy (1965)

| Comedy, War | 1965 (UK)
Busted for running an illegal gambling den during the Second World War, a gang of East End wideboys choose conscription over prison and take their talents on a tour of duty.



(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Harry H. Corbett ...
Joey Boy Thompson
Stanley Baxter ...
Benny 'The Kid' Lindowski
Bill Fraser ...
Sgt. Maj. Dobbs
Mad George Long
Lance Percival ...
Clarence Doubleday
Reg Varney ...
Rabbit Malone
Lady Thameridge
Derek Nimmo ...
Lt. Hope
Thorley Walters ...
Col. Grant
John Arnatt ...
Brig. Charles Chapman
Antonio (Italian farmer)
John Phillips ...
Insp. Morgan
Lloyd Lamble ...
Sir John Averycorn
Edward Chapman ...
Tom Hobson
Basil Dignam ...


Busted for running an illegal gambling den during the Second World War, a gang of East End wideboys choose conscription over prison and take their talents on a tour of duty.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | War


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Release Date:

1965 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

La dolce vita del soldato Joe  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Final film of Freddie Mills. See more »

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User Reviews

Launder & Gilliat cash in their chips
16 February 2007 | by (Wales) – See all my reviews

Corbett and his spivvy gang are faced with the tough choice of the big house or boot camp as 'reward' for their criminal endeavours. After opting for the latter, and following a failed attempt to avoid their fate with forged med certs, an hour or so ensues of largely mirth-free 'rude awakening' mishaps.

Corbett and his entourage (including the ever-hideous Reg 'Sweaty Combover' Varney) are not an attractive gang. Imagine the George Cole character from Launder & Gilliat's St. Trinian's series having a whole movie to himself, without the checks and balances of the other range of eccentric and distinguished protagonists around him. If that appeals to you then you may love it.

The film falls into that void of 60s British cinema wherein everything except prestige productions (mostly enhanced by a healthy injection of the Dollar) and social realism fell flat. Comedy of the era by and largely now fails; an unwanted stopgap between the decline of the wit-laden riches of the 40s and 50s, and the embracing of the puerile by the general public with each successively vulgar Carry On entry, as the series progressed towards the 70s.

The few laughs are wrung out of the army game's reliable cast of spit-and-polish character players who deserve better lines and routines, and 10 years earlier in a similar plot, would have been given them to work with. But all the film serves to do now is put paid to any notions, held by cultists in their favour, that the writing/production/directing team of Launder & Gilliat are entitled to auteur status within the 'classic' Brit Cinema heritage canon.

In an ironic way this serves a purpose, as all they otherwise did of note during these twilight years was ever-more dispiriting cash-ins on the St. Trinians franchise that, due to the worthiness of the original film, may nevertheless nostalgically cloud the memories of the team's defenders.

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