Post by jno on Mar 28, 2015 21:38:26 GMT
I have had this one on my bucket list for ages and with an hour and a half to spare this evening I finally sat down to watch it!
GC is great in this as Fred Slater, brother-in-law of Alfie Brewer, played by Leslie Dwyer. The story is pretty simple: an Uncle dies without leaving a will, his west country farm passes to his three London relatives. Two of them wish to sell the place, while the third wants to set up as a farmer. Facing a backlash from his family, Alfie Brewer does what he can to set up the farm again before the mortgage on the place is called in by a rival neighbour.
Supposedly a comedy, I have to say I didn't laugh once from start to finish and soon lost interest in it and only contnued watching because of the fantastic cast. GC is on top form but the story just doesn't make me laugh at all unfortunately. The best bit for me was watching a couple of Londoners trying to survive in the countryside but that was soon done and dusted.
The real treat in this film though was seeing GC doing his thing alongside some fantastic actors and actresses in early roles. Having read a similar opinion on an IMDB review of this film I have to agree 100% - the real treat here is watching all these actors doing there stuff. Sadly for me, the story is pretty plain throughout and the script just lacks any spark and it just trundles along from scene to scene. GC is great to watch of course.
The one major treat for me is seeing of my favourite actors working alongside one another - George Cole and the legendary Edward Woodward, which according to his IMDB record was his first role. He plays the son of the rival neighbour, a character called Ralph Stokes. It is light years away from Callan or The Equalizer and he is really quite charming in this.
There are also a list of other 'well known' names in this once which are a real joy to watch but sadly the script is just not doing them justice - Kathleen Harrison (appeared in 1951 'Scrooge' that also starred GC), Dandy Nichols (Til Death Do Us Part) and a major role for Leslie Dwyer (Hi-de-hi/The Sweeney 'Trojan Bus').
There are also a few Minder connections - firstly Sam Kydd (who appeared in 'Diamonds Are a Girl's Worst Enemy') and secondly Thelma Ruby (who appeared as Dave's neighbour at the window when Jones goes round to visit in 'Days of Fines & Closures'). She has her own website here: www.thelmaruby.com/
Finally, Robert Sharples did the music and although I am still trying to work out exactly where his music appears in Minder, he does appear in the Minder credits of series 1 and series 2 episodes in Minder as the composer of incidental music.
I have to say, if you want to watch a bunch of great actors doing their thing, I would recommend this. Sadly though 80 minutes is a bit too long to watch without getting a laugh - for me, the script is weak, the acting great but it was hard to get to the end of 80 minutes.
Overall, sadly 3/10 from me.
IMDb link: www.imdb.com/title/tt0049948/