Carry On Again Doctor has little to distinguish it from the other medical Carry Ons. It is something of a mishmash of ideas with little in the way of a cohesive on-going narrative. In fact, the film stops halfway through and takes an entirely unexpected, though not unwelcome, change of direction. You would be forgiven for confusing the first half of the film with the earlier Carry On Doctor as once again Jim Dale’s young dashing doctor is victimised by the hospital elders, in the shape of Kenneth Williams and Hattie Jacques in precisely the same way as in the earlier film.
But let’s not completely devalue the film’s opening. That the earlier segments in the hospital are similar to Carry On Doctor is high praise indeed. They’re funny...very funny indeed. The ongoing plot of Dr Carver’s seduction of Ellen Moore is brilliantly handled by Williams and Sims, Patsy Rowlands is delightful as the squirming Miss Fosdick and Charles Hawtrey gives, as Dr Stoppidge, one of his finest performances.
But the film really takes off when Nookey returns to Blighty. The Moore-Nookey cure is a marvel and as punters flock to their door, the increasingly desperate antics of Carver and Stoppidge to get to the bottom of the mysterious potion are hilariously misguided. Hawtrey, it has to be said, makes for a gruesomely convincing grand dame.
Sadly, the film ends on something of a duff note, with an unimaginative runaround which only compounds the overall feeling that there’s something not quite finished, not properly thought-out about the whole affair. That’s not to say Carry On Again Doctor is a bad film, rather that it’s a jumble of ideas all vying for their own place in the limelight.