7.4/10
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16 user 6 critic

Call Me Genius (1961)

The Rebel (original title)
Anthony Hancock gives up his office job to become an abstract artist. He has a lot of enthusiasm, but little talent, and critics scorn his work. Nevertheless, he impresses an emerging very talented artist.

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Anthony Hancock
... Sir Charles Brewer
Paul Massie ... Paul Ashby
... Margot Carreras
... Aristotle Carreras
... Jim Smith
... Mrs. Crevatte
... Office Manager
... Waitress
... Manager of Art Gallery, London
... Manager of Art Gallery, Paris
... Josey
... Madame Laurent
Bernard Rebel ... Art Dealer
... Artist
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Storyline

Anthony Hancock gives up his office job to become an abstract artist. He has a lot of enthusiasm, but little talent, and critics scorn his work. Nevertheless, he impresses an emerging very talented artist.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From London's "Bowler-Hatted" Conformity to Paris' Left Bank Madness! (US release: Call Me Genius) See more »

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

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Release Date:

19 March 1961 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Call Me Genius  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In September 2002 the London Institute of Pataphysics recreated Alistair Grant's pieces for the film (down to Magnus Irvin's pyjama'd reworking of Tony's bicycle action painting, itself inspired by former Royal College of Art student Bill Green's output) at London's The Foundry, presenting the exhibition as if it were a retrospective of genuine unknown artist Anthony Hancock. See more »

Quotes

Jim Smith: English names are so mysterious, don't you think?
Hancock: Oh, yes. I knew an 'Arry Trubshawe and a Bert 'Iggins once. Dead mysterious they were.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The producers wish to acknowledge the fullest co-operation accorded - somewhat apprehensively - by BRITISH RAILWAYS. See more »

Connections

Featured in John Le Mesurier: It's All Been Rather Lovely (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

At Last! At Last!
(uncredited)
Written by Charles Trenet
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User Reviews

Tony Hancock misfiring is still a funny film
16 March 2002 | by See all my reviews

Tony is trapped in the drudgery of a 9-5:30 office job. But at night he is an artist who has great talent and vision (he believes). When he decides to quit his job and move to France he falls in with a group of artists who admire the `childlike' quality to his work. However when he passes another artists work off as his own and gets signed by a major agent he begins to get over his head in trouble.

For fans of Hancock's Half Hour on the BBC this film will represent strange new ground – an extension of the short concise stories with depression being the overriding source of Hancock's comedy. Here the story sees him less put down and more of a winner – this removes a lot of what made him funny.

However the story still has wit as Hancock makes fun of the pretentious art crowd and makes fun of his own inability to paint. However the running time is perhaps too long to sustain and much of the comedy is such that it could easily have been done by anyone – rarely is Hancock's unique style allowed material to work with.

Hancock is still good though, and him misfiring is still funny. George Sanders has an interesting role and it's always good to see John Le Mesurier in anything. However at times you can't help feeling that Sid James could have been added somewhere. In fact the whole film would have been better modelled around the format of the TV and radio shows.

Overall this is the film failing – it is stretched and, for most of the second half, it's comedy is not the usual Hancock fare that so many loved. It's funny but it'll make you seek out tapes and videos of his classic shows.


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