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The Unseen Eric Morecambe (2005)

A documentary on the life of Eric Morecambe based on discoveries from his private study, which until now had not been entered since his death twenty years ago.


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Credited cast:
Ludo Graham ... Narrator (voice)
Ted Robbins ... Reader of Story Extracts (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
John Ammonds ... Himself
Michael Aspel ... Himself
Eddie Braben ... Himself
Tim Brooke-Taylor ... Himself (as Tim Brooke Taylor)
Fiona Castle ... Herself
Barry Cryer ... Himself
Bill Drysdale ... Himself
... Himself
Michael Fountain ... Himself
... Herself
... Himself
Gail Morecambe ... Herself
Gary Morecambe ... Himself


In the twenty years since his death, Eric Morecambe's private study had not been entered by anyone, not even his family. Now, his family have finally given permission for documentary makers to enter the place where Eric did all his work and where he forbade anyone else to enter, and many fascinating records of his life have been uncovered. These include many letters, tape recordings, diary entries, and a video recording of the father-of-the-bride speech he gave at his daughter's wedding. This documentary tells the life of one of the most celebrated comedians of all time with the help of these new-found treasures. Written by thomaswake16

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Release Date:

3 January 2005 (UK)  »

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References The Morecambe & Wise Show (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Apart from a terrible narration this is actually an enjoyable look at Eric Morecambe – public and private
11 December 2005 | by See all my reviews

Twenty years after his death, the Morecambe family decided to open up their home and the contents of their father's study to a camera crew. Using the tape recordings and notes found there, along with comments from friends, family and fans, the film paints an intimate picture of the famous entertainer Eric Morecambe.

This film opens with a rubbish narration that paints this film as a daring expose of Eric Morecambe which I must admit had me worried because it was not what I wanted and it sounded like it would be rather cheap. I was interested but not in a tacky way because for me and many million others, Morecambe and Wise were two of the best light entertainment performers I'll probably ever see. It was timely that I saw this in the run up to Christmas because they are one of the things I look forward to at this time of the year and it is where I hope future generations will continue to discover them.

Despite continuing with the slightly seedy narration, the film succeeds because of the power of the man himself – he is a legend and even without being there he holds the interest. The talking heads all do him justice, being a mix of the personal and the professional and almost all of them being interesting and edited well together. The film relies heavily on clips of course, which is a good thing because it gives it a more rounded feel of a "look back" rather than the expose the narration suggests. Morecambe comes out of the film really well (despite the sinister tone) but it is all a bit unfair on Ernie Wise – a classic straightman who is just dismissed by this film as a side-issue; understandable perhaps because he was not the focus of the film but unforgivable just in terms of the treatment of the man. The film does treat Eric well though, not really getting as far beneath the skin as the narration suggests but it does give more to the comedy sketches and it is still very interesting.

Overall then, this is better than the narration suggests it but not as deep as the "unseen" title suggests. However, despite Graham's terrible voice work, this is actually an interesting, enjoyable and engaging look back at a man who was half of the most fondly remembered double act in the past fifty years. There can't be many people who do not love this man and for that reason it is worth seeing.

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