6.7/10
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4 user 3 critic

The Secret Policeman's Other Ball (1982)

The film of an on-stage charity benefit for Amnesty International. The show includes comedy skits by the members of Monty Python, as well as noted comedians Peter Cook, Rowan Atkinson, and ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Himself / Various Roles
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John Bird ...
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Tim Brooke-Taylor ...
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Johnnie Fingers ...
Himself (as Johnny Fingers)
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Himself / Various Roles
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Storyline

The film of an on-stage charity benefit for Amnesty International. The show includes comedy skits by the members of Monty Python, as well as noted comedians Peter Cook, Rowan Atkinson, and others. The show also includes musical numbers by Eric Clapton, Sting, Donovan and Bob Geldof. Written by Jean-Marc Rocher <rocher@fiberbit.net>

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R | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

23 September 1982 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

O horos tou xefonimenou mystikou batsou  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was the first box-office hit in the USA for Miramax Films. In a 10th June 2000 Hollywood Reporter interview with Bob Weinstein and Harvey Weinstein, they said, "Back in 1982 when we were starting Miramax Films, Martin Lewis was the producer of what became our first hit movie - The Secret Policeman's Other Ball (1982) starring the Monty Pythons. Martin had a background in publicity and marketing and came up with a great campaign for the movie, creating a huge buzz and getting us free publicity, which was crucial to the film's success. We learned a lot about publicity and marketing from our experience with Martin Lewis". See more »

Quotes

Reginald Prawnbaum: [Rolling his eyes] While the worker bees...
The Crazy Interviewer: Ssshh.
Reginald Prawnbaum: ...fly from flower to flower...
The Crazy Interviewer: Ssshh.
Reginald Prawnbaum: ...collecting...
The Crazy Interviewer: Ssshh.
Reginald Prawnbaum: ...the...
The Crazy Interviewer: Ssshh.
[Long pause. Prawnbaum prepares to say the word, and notices the Interviewer preparing to make the noise again]
Reginald Prawnbaum: ...pollen.
[...]
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Crazy Credits

In the version that has segments from the first and second shows, Michael Palin interrupts the credits to sell various "Secret Policeman's" products to the viewer (profits going to Amnesty International). See more »

Connections

Followed by The Secret Policeman's Ball (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Message in a Bottle
Written by Sting
Performed by Sting
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User Reviews

 
If you don't expect it to be particularly funny, it's worth seeing...or at least listening.
14 May 2011 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

The first Amnesty International benefit film, "The Secret Policeman's Ball", consisted almost exclusively of British comedy--with many of the top comedians the country had to offer--including almost all the Monty Python members. However, by this 1982 film, some changes had occurred. Despite IMDb saying something about the Monty Python alumni, only two of the group are in this one. Many of the other performers are faceless to the average American aside from a young Rowan Atkinson. However, comedy now only made up half the show--the rest were big-name musicians from the era, such as Sting and Phil Collins. Now if the comedy had been good, the music (if you don't care for it) could be ignored and the film still be worth seeing. Unfortunately, none of the skits were particularly funny. In fact, there was almost no laughter to be had if you see it today. Such unfunny skits included one about anonymous gay sex, nude dancers (actually just dressed guys with paper over their naughty bits), a couple decent impersonations (of Mr. Thatcher and Reagan) and a tacky joke about deaf people.

Unfortunately, there was absolutely nothing that interested me in this film. Now to put it in context, I LOVE British comedy (my favorite comedies are all British--such as "Monty Python", "The Vicar of Dibley", "Mr. Bean", "Little Britain" and "Waiting for God"). But, I do not like improvised BAD British comedy, so there is absolutely no way I'd recommend this. In fact, I was so disappointed that the music was actually better (and funnier) than the skits.


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