Publicity

 


Story

The mysterious highwayman, Big Dick Turpin (Sid James), and his band of cut-throats are at large.  With his enormous weapon and his cry of “Stand and Deliver” nobody is safe on the highways of England.  

Sir Roger Daley, (Bernard Bresslaw), humiliated after being robbed of everything apart from his shoes, vows vengeance against Turpin and puts his top man on the case. However, with an opponent like Captain Desmond Fancey (Kenneth Williams), Turpin doesn’t appear to have too much to worry about.

Captain Fancey and his sidekick, Jock Strapp (Jack Douglas), set out to trap the highwayman by any means necessary.  Whether it means hiding in the bushes or spying in men’s conveniences, they leave no stone unturned but it’s a safe bet that nobody will be getting their hands on Dick anytime soon.

 

A Peter Rogers Production
Directed by Gerald Thomas

1974
Colour

Screenplay: Talbot Rothwell
Music: Eric Rogers
Certificate A/PG
91 minutes

Dick Turpin/Rev Flasher -
Sid James
Harriet/Harry
Barbara Windsor
Captain Fancy -
Kenneth Williams
Martha -
Hattie Jacques
Sir Roger Daley -
Bernard Bresslaw
Madame Desiree -
Joan Sims

Constable

-
Kenneth Connor
Tom -
Peter Butterworth
Sergeant Jock Strapp -
Jack Douglas
Mrs Giles -
Patsy Rowlands
Bodkin -
Bill Maynard
Lady Daley -
Margaret Nolan
Isaak -
John Clive
Bullock -
David Lodge
Maggie -
Marianne Stone
Thug -
Billy Cornelius
Coach Driver -
Sam Kelly
Birds of Paradise -
Linda Hooks, Eva Reuber-Stainer, Penny Irvins, Laraine Humphrys

 

 

"Notorious outlaw Dick Turpin (more commonly referred to as Big Dick) is running rings around King George's Bow Street Runners.

Can the half-witted Captain Desmond Fancey, Sir Roger Daley and Sergeant Jock Strapp succeed in bringing the wily rogue to justice?

Sid James and the rest of the 'Carry On' gang are having a ball and everyone is invited.

Merry England was never merrier."
 

Review

There’s a lot to love about Carry On Dick. Sid James plays the dual roles of the growling Dick Turpin and the “butter-wouldn’t-melt” Reverend Flasher brilliantly and there are similarly great performances from Kenneth Williams, Bernard Bresslaw, Jack Douglas and the rest of the Carry On regulars.  The script has plenty of good honest laughs and visually it depicts the period well (concrete bollards and road-markings notwithstanding).  But there’s something not quite right about the way it all hangs together.  

Personally, my biggest problem with Carry On Dick is that so many great actors are relegated to relatively minor roles.  Kenneth Connor doesn’t get much to do and Hattie Jacques’ character is, frankly, pointless.  Miss Haggerd is an irrelevant inclusion but the fact that she is in the script means Hattie should have had some decent material to work with.  The sad truth is that she does not. Her role appears to be little more than walking bromide to the Reverend’s ardour.

The whole gang is giving it everything they’ve got and it’s easy to get swept along by the fun of it all, particularly when Kenneth Williams is in full flow but I cannot shake the feeling that their hearts are not really in this one.  Carry On Dick has all the ingredients of a classic Carry On but they’re delivered in such a way as to make the whole significantly less than the sum of the by now rather sagging parts.