Tag Archives: Dudley Moore

The Bed-Sitting Room (1969)

Director – Richard Lester

Writer – Spike Milligan, Charles Wood and John Antrobus

If you’re looking for odd movies, you’ve come to the right place. This film is in a class of its own. In fact, if it was in school, it would probably be in detention, or even expelled for insubordinate behaviour! ‘Post-Apocalyptic Surrealist Nightmare’ is a start to describing what it features, but doesn’t do it enough justice at all. This is an illumination of the darkest recesses of Spike Milligan’s 20th Century-addled mind. It gives us a disturbing view of a world after the nuclear Holocaust, with a very British take on it, in that people attempt to return to their dull daily routines. It is quite believeable in its absurdity. Heading the cast is the ever-watchable Arthur Lowe, depicting what could be considered as what Captain Mainwaring would do after nuclear Armageddon. He would maintain decorum and a stiff upper lip, of course, despite the wreckage and carnage around him, and despite any kind of common sense.

The radiation has caused strange mutations to occur, including a reference to the titular bedsitting room itself, with some bizarrely brilliant scenes, imagery and jokes that deliniate Spike’s sheer comic genius through and through, alongside his total insanity, or perhaps ultra-sanity, in his exasperation and disbelief at the everyday insanity that regular people possess in being able to ignore the devastation and problems around them. Enjoy the show! It’s a very harrowing laughter in the darkness, but what else can you do in the face of absolute nuclear annhialation?

TL-R

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Bedazzled (1967)

bedazzled

Director – Stanley Donen

Writers – Peter Cook (story and screenplay), Dudley Moore (story)

If you are looking for a taste of smart, hip, swinging sixties satricial humour, you could do much worse than watching the original, witty British version of Bedazzled. The film is a modern morality tale with a wealth of stellar turns and sharp dialogue. The concept is well-travelled, a man who makes a pact with The Devil for wealth, fame and pleasure, but the wry, urbane irony that pervades the film gives it a unique flavour, with Peter Cook playing the eminently groovy Old Nick, otherwise known as George Spiggott, while the hapless Stanley Moon, an affectionately doddery Dudley Moore, stumbles through acerbic encounters with the Seven Deadly Sins, including a scorching Raquel Welch as Lilian Lust and a raucous Barry Humphries as Envy, in all their perverse modern incarnations, after being rejected by the object of his affections, Margaret, the delectable Eleanor Bron, his steely Wimpy Bar co-worker. You’ll laugh uncomfortably as you recognise the world around us, and perhaps elicit a small amount of sympathy for The Devil, who certainly always has the best lines. Well worth watching if just for the leaping nuns!

TL-R