14 user 5 critic

The Big Job (1965)

An inept gang of bank robbers, led by George The Brain, are caught and sentenced to 15 years hard labour each. When they are released from prison they start out to collect the money they ... See full summary »


Gerald Thomas


Talbot Rothwell (screenplay), John Antrobus (from an original story)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Sidney James ... George Brain
Sylvia Syms ... Myrtle Robbins
Dick Emery Dick Emery ... Frederick 'Booky' Binns
Joan Sims ... Mildred Gamely
Lance Percival Lance Percival ... Timothy 'Dipper' Day
Jim Dale ... Harold
Edina Ronay ... Sally Gamely
Deryck Guyler ... Police Sergeant
Reginald Beckwith ... Register Office Official
Michael Ward Michael Ward ... Undertaker
Brian Rawlinson ... Henry Blobbitt
David Horne ... Judge
Frank Forsyth ... Bank Cashier
Frank Thornton ... Bank Official
Wanda Ventham ... Dot Franklin


An inept gang of bank robbers, led by George The Brain, are caught and sentenced to 15 years hard labour each. When they are released from prison they start out to collect the money they had stolen and which George had hidden in a hollow tree during the chase in which they were caught. The only trouble is that the tree was in the middle of a lonely lane when they were imprisoned; now, 15 years later, the tree is in the backyard of a Police Station... Written by Rhino <rhino@blueyonder.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

heist | independent film | See All (2) »


WANTED in connection with THE GREAT TRAIN ROBBERY otherwise know as...


Comedy | Mystery


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Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


At the end of the film, Joan Sims as new head of the gang, plans to rob a train from Edinburgh with used bank notes worth five million pounds. This film was made two years after the Great Train Robbery, however that train was from Glasgow and was carrying 2.6 million pounds in used bank notes. Joan also mentions changing the signal to red which occurred during the Great Train Robbery. Also Sidney James' character's name is Brain, hence the Great Brain Robbery. These are all obvious references to the Great Train Robbery. See more »


During the bedroom scene when they first get the telescope to look into the police station, there is a bedside table next to Dick Emery. In the course of several shots of the table a booklet appears-disappears-reappears and the clock goes back in time. See more »


[under sufference, George has got married to Myrtle; the registrar has just pronounced them husband and wife]
George Brain: [to the registrar] You haven't heard the last of this. I shall appeal.
See more »

Alternate Versions

When originally released theatrically in the UK, the BBFC made cuts to secure a 'U' rating. See more »


Referenced in Blue Streak (1999) See more »


Policeman's Song
from "The Pirates of Penzance"
Lyrics by W.S. Gilbert
Music by Arthur Sullivan
Sung by Jim Dale (Harold) and the police choir, and used as a theme during the film.
See more »

User Reviews

An enjoyably light film from the Carry On school of comedy
30 June 2003 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

A group of criminals led by George Brain (known to himself as `The Great Brain') plan to rob a bank. Although the job doesn't go totally to plan, they do get away with £15K. However the police catch them as they make their get away and George is forced to stash the money in a hollow tree. For refusing to say where the money is the group get 15 years each in prison but vow to escape. 15 years later they are released and immediately go to find the tree – but find that a new town has sprung up where once there was fields. Happily the tree is still standing – unfortunately it is now standing in the back yard of a police station. The gang take up rooms in a B&B across the street to plan their next move.

Although I doubt I will ever prove it, I maintain that this film must have been a source of inspiration for the film Blue Streak. The set up is identical although the follow through is different. Regardless of this, The Big Job is an enjoyable film with plenty of Carry On style humour (although not part of the series proper). The plot is good and has a few nice touches towards the end. Although the comedy stays away from the bawdy antics of later Carry On features, it does have a gentle line in innuendo. My favourite lines involve one of the characters talking about animals that odd names – such as a lengthy discussion on the rarity of the bird the `Little Bustard' – had me laughing! The slap stick of the piece is also done well and there are some nice set pieces – although some are a little obvious.

The cast are good and work well together with so many Carry On faces. Sid James is good value and uses his facial expressions well (albeit without the trademark laugh). A young Emery is funny and Percival is quite enjoyable. The best members of the cast are those who have smaller inputs which are usually funny. Dale is amusing as the cop but Guyler (who has but 3 scenes) is good value for money. Joan Sims is funny playing a slightly amorous widow! Edina Ronay plays her daughter and, at only 20 at the time, is very, very sexy – and made even more so by the fact that she really plays that side of her character up!

Overall this is an enjoyable film that will appeal to anyone who watches the Carry On films there were made around the same period. It has a good plot, some nice sequences and plenty of good lines or characterisations. You won't be roaring with laughter but it is amusing and funny enough to justify watching.

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Release Date:

15 October 1965 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Atraco imperfecto See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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