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Set in post-nuclear-holocaust England, where a handful of bizarre characters struggle on with their lives in the ruins, amongst endless heaps of ash, piles of broken crockery and brick, muddy plains, and heaps of dentures and old boots. Patriotically singing "God Save Mrs. Etheyl Shroake, Long Live Mrs. Etheyl Shroake", they wander through this surrealistic landscape, forever being warned by the police to "keep moving", and prone to the occasional mutation into a parrot, cupboard, or even, yes, a bed sitting room with "No Wogs" scrawled in the grime on it's windows. In particular, this story revolves around the odd "love story" of a girl who lives with her parents in one compartment of a London Underground train, the commuter in the next compartment, and the doctor they meet after returning above ground in search of a nurse for the heavily pregnant girl. Written by
Sonya Roberts <email@example.com>
Richard Lester's directorial career went into nose-dive (at least for a while) after making this film, which was a pity. It's a post-apocalyptic black comedy like no other. Typically British and typically Milligan-ish, with a stunning visual sense.
What I enjoy most about this film is its uncompromising weirdness. It's incredibly inventive, if not particularly funny, and also quite depressing - but it has to be, dealing with the aftermath of nuclear war.
There are some excellent performances from a cast which seems to contain most of the outstanding British comedy talent of the last thirty years (Marty Feldman is particularly fine) and some pointed satire about the British "stiff upper lip", but it's the surreal visuals which stand out, including the remains of a motorway with hundreds of cars half-buried in mud, and an escalator emerging into a landscape almost entirely composed of broken crockery.
A flawed masterpiece.
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