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Britannia Hospital (1982)

R | | Comedy, Sci-Fi | 27 May 1982 (UK)
Mick Travis is a reporter who is about to shoot a documentary on Britannia Hospital, an institution which mirrors the downsides of British Society. It's the day when Her Royal Highness is ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Vincent Potter
Brian Pettifer ...
John Moffatt ...
Greville Figg
...
Chief Superintendant Johns
Vivian Pickles ...
Matron
Barbara Hicks ...
Miss Tinker
...
Jill Bennett ...
Dr. MacMillan
Peter Jeffrey ...
Sir Geoffrey
Marsha A. Hunt ...
Nurse Amanda Persil (as Marsha Hunt)
Catherine Willmer ...
Dr. Houston
Mary MacLeod ...
Casualty Sister
...
Phyllis Grimshaw
...
Dave Atkins ...
Sharkey
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Storyline

Mick Travis is a reporter who is about to shoot a documentary on Britannia Hospital, an institution which mirrors the downsides of British Society. It's the day when Her Royal Highness is to visit the hospital to inaugurate a new wing, where advanced (and sinister) scientific experiments led by Prof. Millar will take place. Everybody in the hospital, from the cooks who refuse to cook, to the painters who couldn't care less to get their job done, to an African cannibalistic dictator (a la Amin Dada) whom demonstrators want expelled from the hospital and tried, will contribute to making HRH's visit (and Mick Travis's life) a true nightmare. Written by Dragomir R. Radev <radev@cs.columbia.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Will they ever recover ... ?

Genres:

Comedy | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

27 May 1982 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Britannia Hospital - festdagen  »

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(Technicolor)

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Arthur Lowe: As a guest patient. See more »

Goofs

At 48:09, the cameraman goes from looking at the officials at the table to looking at Millar between shots. See more »

Quotes

Professor Millar: Friends! Fellow Members of the Human Race! We are gathered here for a purpose. Let us look together at Mankind. What do we see? We see Mastery. What wonders Mankind can perform. He can cross the oceans and continents today, as easily as our grandfathers crossed the street. Tomorrow he will as easily cross the vast territories of space. He can make deserts FERTILE and plant cabbages on the Moon. And what does man CHOOSE? Alone among the creatures of this world, the Human Race CHOOSES to ...
See more »

Connections

References White Heat (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

Thine Be The Glory
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Edmond Budry, music by George Frideric Handel
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User Reviews

 
BRITANNIA HOSPITAL (Lindsay Anderson, 1982) ***
23 August 2006 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

This is the last entry in The Mick Travis Trilogy (also comprising IF.... [1968] and O LUCKY MAN! [1973], all directed by Anderson, written by David Sherwin and starring Malcolm McDowell as Travis) and the only one I hadn't watched before; ironically, the film made it to DVD before the others which are still M.I.A. (being owned by the majors, Paramount and Warners respectively) though both have been rumored as being "in preparation" for what seems like forever!! As with HELL IS A CITY (1960) and THE CRIMINAL (1960), I had my eyes on the Anchor Bay DVD of this title for the longest time but only now have I finally taken the plunge to acquire it - though, in its case, this had more to do with the fact that the film was largely considered a failure, certainly in comparison with its more highly-regarded predecessors!

Actually, it comes off as quite underrated and its satire on British society at large - with the titular hospital serving more or less as a microcosm of all that was not well with the country during the early 80s - is just as harsh, if admittedly somewhat hit-and-miss (the "Frankenstein" scenes, for instance, and the fact that royal representatives are played by a midget and a man in drag are more tasteless than anything else!). The thing is, however, that the film became part of the trilogy by accident and, in fact, McDowell isn't really the lead character - so that it's not quite as focused as IF.... and O LUCKY MAN!, and even borrows elements from both of them (the revolutionary aspect from the former and the bizarre experiments, mentioned above, from the latter) which aren't as successful this time around!

Still, it's very funny - for those who can take its unbridled savagery

  • along the way and the cast is brimming with talented character actors


(Leonard Rossiter, Graham Crowden, Joan Plowright, Jill Bennett, Peter Jeffrey, Brian Pettifer, Dandy Nichols, Richard Griffiths, Brian Glover, Robbie Coltrane, uncredited bits by Alan Bates and Arthur Lowe, and even unlikely appearances - in fairly important roles - by Robin Askwith and Mark Hamill!), many of whom had already appeared in the two earlier Mick Travis films. Unfortunately, the score by Alan Price (ex-member of The Animals) - whose O LUCKY MAN! soundtrack, including a number of songs, had been one of its major assets - is underwhelming and, typical of old British films, the dialogue is hard to grasp sometimes due to the limited sound recording and the actors' heavy accents!


5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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