6.6/10
2,200
17 user 7 critic

Don't Lose Your Head (1967)

The time of the French revolution, and Citizen Robespierre is beheading the French aristocracy. When word gets to England, two noblemen, Sir Rodney Ffing and Lord Darcy take it upon ... See full summary »

Director:

Gerald Thomas

Writer:

Talbot Rothwell (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sidney James ... Sir Rodney Ffing / The Black Fingernail
Kenneth Williams ... Citizen Camembert
Jim Dale ... Lord Darcy Pue
Charles Hawtrey ... Duc de Pommfrit
Peter Butterworth Peter Butterworth ... Citizen Bidet
Joan Sims ... Désirée Dubarry
Dany Robin ... Jacqueline
Peter Gilmore ... Citizen Robespierre
Marianne Stone ... Landlady
Michael Ward Michael Ward ... Henri
Leon Greene ... Malabonce
David Davenport David Davenport ... Sergeant
Richard Shaw Richard Shaw ... Captain of Soldiers
Valerie Van Ost ... Second Lady / Girl at Execution
Jennifer Clulow Jennifer Clulow ... First Lady
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Storyline

The time of the French revolution, and Citizen Robespierre is beheading the French aristocracy. When word gets to England, two noblemen, Sir Rodney Ffing and Lord Darcy take it upon themselves to aid there French counterparts. Sir Rodney is a master of disguise, and becomes "the black fingernail", scourge of Camembert and Bidet, leaders of the French secret police... Written by Simon N. McIntosh-Smith <Simon.N.Smith@cs.cf.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Carry On laughing until you have hysterics, but...Don't Lose Your Head!


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 December 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Carry On Pimpernel See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After twelve Carry On films and various other comedy releases with Anglos Amalgamated, Peter Rogers was forced to look for a new distribution company. The Rank Organisation proved willing. Legal questions over title ownership and Rank's concern over inheriting a rival's brand name led to the abandonment of the Carry On prefix from this opening venture. In a post-production meeting in February 1967 Rogers commented that: "as the film was more visual than previous "Carry On" productions it could stand on its own without any reference to 'carry on'." Still, Rank were mindful of the success of the series and considered the release as "virtually the thirteenth "Carry On" film". The poster tagline, 'Carry On Laughing Until You Have Hysterics But Don't Lose Your Head' was used as a conscious link with the past and won over earlier suggestions including; "that "Carry On" team has the French Revolution in Convulsions" and "Carry On Tumbrils - they're the new rescue squad of the French Revolution." The American release removed all confusion and simply re-titled the film Carry On Pimpernel. See more »

Goofs

All the aristocrats are shown being executed facing upwards. In real life, they were executed facing downwards into the basket. The only person to be executed facing up was Robespierre. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: Paris, 1789. The Great Revolution has begun. The hands of the masses are smeared with the blood of the poor bleeding aristocracy. Every day the tumbrels run a regular half-hour service between the Bastille and the many guillotines around the city. The growing mounds of noble heads are only matched by the growing mounds of unused return tickets. No-one is spared. Madame La Guillotine claims them all. Dukes and Duchesses, Lords and Ladies, men and women of both sexes. A dozen times ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

As usual with the Carry On films the BBFC objected to many of the lines when the script was submitted to them, though in the end only a few cuts were made. These included a reference to Jacqueline having 'a pluck' and a stuttered use of 'fishing' during the opening narration. See more »

Connections

Edited into What a Carry On: Episode #1.3 (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

Don't Lose Your Head
Written by Bill Martin and Phil Coulter
Executed by Mike Sammes (as The Michael Sammes Singers)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Sir Rodney Effing with two f's!!!
3 May 2007 | by no-skylineSee all my reviews

This probably ranks as one of the better carry ons certainly in the top 10 but not quite in the top 5. Its from the period when the team were making the historical/costume carry ons that yielded so many of the classic carry on's Cleo, Cowboy and of course Up The Khyber. This time its the turn of the Black Fingernail (Sid James) to ride to the rescue of the French Aristocracy able assisted by Lord Darcy Pugh (Jim Dale) opposed by Citizens Bidet (Petter Butterworth) and Cananbert (Kenneth Williams).

James is on top form and clearly relishes the chance to play the swash buckling hero much as he did in Cowboy he steals the show in this one as Williams isn't in the fine form he was in other historical carry ons such as Cleo and Kyhber. Dale provides able support as does Butterworth who began to become a more regular cast member through this period. Jaqueline Biset looks sumptuous as the love interest but some of the best lines go to the supporting characters of Joan Simms and Charles Hawtry.

If you love Carry On's you'll adore this if not this one probably wont be the one to convert you. Overall a good carry on not up there with Cleo and Up the Khyber etc but well worthy of a 7.5 out of 10.


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