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The Navy Lark (1959)

| Comedy | 1959 (UK)
Film version of a popular BBC radio show about the incompetent crew of a Royal Navy ship.

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

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ronald Shiner ...
...
Elvi Hale ...
Leading WREN Heather
...
Capt. Povey
Cardew Robinson ...
Lt. Binns
Harold Kasket ...
Gaston Higgins
...
Fortune Teller
Reginald Beckwith ...
CNI
Kenneth J. Warren ...
Brown
...
Mabel
Richard Coleman ...
Lt. Bates R.N.
Llewellyn Rees ...
Adm. Troutbridge
...
Rear Admiral
Gordon Harris ...
Group Captain
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Storyline

On the English Channel Island of Boonzey there is a small British Navy base serviced by minesweeper HMS Compton.The task of the vessel and its crew is to sweep the surrounding waters for German magnetic mines leftover from WW2.The task is easy since there are no mines in the local waters.Therefore, the crew spends its time in various ways in order to kill boredom.The skipper, Commander Stanton, spends his time fishing.His second in command, Lieutenant Pouter, spends his time womanizing.Chief Petty Officer Banyard and Leading Seaman Johnson spend their time smuggling booze, in collusion with the local French fishermen.However, their idyllic paradise is about to be shattered when the Navy higher-ups decide to send Captain Povey to assess the usefulness of the base and to decide whether to close it down.Sensing the danger of re-assignment to less idyllic Navy bases, the crew of minesweeper Compton decides to prove that their work in the area is vital, thus leading to their continued ... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

1959 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The Navy Lark  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Leslie Phillips was the only cast member from the BBC Radio series to reprise his role in the film. However Richard Caldicot (the radio show's Captain Povey) makes a cameo appearance in a different role. See more »

Quotes

CPO Banyard: [entering room in agitated state] Sir, it's about Lieutenant Binns sir - something has got to be done.
Cmdr. Stanton: [Sympathetically] Well, we know chief, we know.
CPO Banyard: Yes, but do you know what he's done now Sir? He's pinched the jeep. The Milkman's livid.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Navy Lark is a surely fictitious account of events and goings on in a naval establishment only loosely connected with the senior service. See more »

Connections

Followed by HMS Paradise (1964) See more »

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User Reviews

 
McHale's Navy Lark
16 November 2014 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

After watching The Navy Lark which for years was a popular British radio show about the crew of a minesweeper on peacetime duty I now know where a lot of the comedy and the general idea for McHale's Navy came from. The situations seemed remarkably close.

Commander Cecil Parker has command of a minesweeper stationed upon a channel island of Boonsey which seems to have a mixed population of British and French. The mission is for the minesweeper to clear out all mines left from the late war, but that's been fulfilled a long time ago. But not according to Parker who sends in reports regularly about the work his crew is doing. Parker and the rest of the crew has grown to like it on the island and don't want to join the real Royal Navy any time soon.

The Captain Binghamton of The Navy Lark is Nicholas Phipps who wants to close down the Boonsey Island operation, but not if Parker and his trusty crew can stop him.

In the end through a series of misunderstandings the Navy believes that a revolution against British imperialism is taking place. What happens then is for you to see.

What I can see is why The Navy Lark was such a popular radio show in the United Kingdom. And I think American viewers will see the parallels with McHale's Navy and respond favorably.


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