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Director: Tom Walls
Stars: Tom Walls, Ralph Lynn, Robertson Hare


Cast overview:
Ralph Lynn ...
Major Pyke / Willie Pyke
Veronica Rose ...
Phyllis Chisholm
Hubert Harben ...
Mr. Gallop
Henry B. Longhurst ...
Inspector Harding
Gordon James ...
Reginald Tate ...
Evan Thomas ...
Prison Governor
Joyce Barbour ...
Romilly Lunge ...
Basil Lynn ...
Walter Lindsay ...


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Comedy | Drama





Release Date:

30 August 1937 (UK)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Photophone Ultra Violet Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Excellent dysfunctional extended family affair
26 April 2014 | by (Derby, UK) – See all my reviews

The first time I saw this was on UK Channel 4 on 3rd April 1992 – the VHS tape lasted well; a recording from a lost world taped in a different world now digitised for this current modern world. It was a non-Aldwych farce written and screenplayed by Ben Travers for the usual team of Tom Walls and Ralph Lynn to interpret in their usual laidback and reflective styles. Therefore it's another convoluted and frantic ninety minutes.

Story has Boer War Major Lynn's life saved by Private Walls in the heat of battle – Lynn tries to reward Walls who turns out to be a habitual jailbird beyond all help, so he helps Walls' son instead by becoming his foster father. Years pass and Lynn is in his dotage, son Lynn and father Walls are habitual jailbirds and son Walls is a respectable City crook. The farce is on to prevent his disclosure and exposure. It really needs to be watched in context but there's some delicious lines eg "I wouldn't believe anyone sweet and wonderful as you could be so unprincipled" - "Thank you darling" and situations eg young Walls and old Lynn's interpolatory meeting setting the stage; old Walls frank conversation with the barmaid; young Walls with his loyal and stately wife played by long-suffering ladylike Veronica Rose; the cavalier way the victim Hubert Harben was abused, even when he had Scotland Yard in attendance. And watch out for the future Batman's future butler the young Alan Napier who puts in a brief appearance.

Serious people will need to brace themselves when a character's definition of "whitemail" is reached, and some people may dislike the hurried ending on a moral high - but even if not probable it still was possible! If you know your Travers-Walls-Lynn wine women and silly-asses you won't be disappointed. All in all it's a very pleasant time-filler for me and maybe a few others who might like filling their time with ancient farces with archaic humour from antiquity.

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