What's on this week or so


The Scarlet Pimpernel (1934)

An adventurer disguises himself as a fop to rescue aristocrats from the guillotine in Revolutionary France.

Leslie Howard takes the title role in this lavish, and best, version of the tale.

11.55 am Talking Pictures TV Sun 20 June

Blanche Fury (1948)

Valerie Hobson is the titular governess in this melodrama that's as lurid as its Technicolor. Michael Gough is the wimpy single parent, Stewart Granger the family bastard. She marries the first but fancies the second. Naturally, it all ends badly for all involved.

This is total tosh but what a load of fun on the way!  The production design is stunning - the script less so, though it's entertaining spotting which bits of plot have been nicked from other films. 

11.00 am Film4 Mon 21 June

The Spy in Black (1939)

Valerie Hobson goes undercover to expose a plot to sink the British fleet in WW1 and falls for German Conrad Veidt. 

Excellent spy thriller which marked the first collaboration of Powell and Pressburger.

11.00 am Film4 Tues 22 June

Carry On Regardless (1960)

The Helping Hands agency is run by Sid James. The agency will do anything for anyone. So Williams gets to walk the chimp and Hawtrey gets to enter the boxing ring. This is the most bitty of all the Carry Ons with no attempt at a plot. Still, if you don't like one sequence, there's always another along in a minute. It only falls apart at the end with a slapstick house decorating/wrecking scene.

2.55 pm Film4 Tues 22 June

The Million Pound Note (1953)

Mark Twain's story is turned into a nice little film. Gregory Peck is the object of Ronald Squire's and Wilfrid Hyde White's bet that a man could live without spending money provided he already has plenty of it.

Still from The Million Pound Note

11.00 am Film4 Wed 23 June

This Happy Breed (1944)

Noel Coward's story of a family between the wars. It's sentimental and maybe faintly patronising, and the Technicolor makes the whole thing seem very artificial and theatrical; but once you get past that you have a fascinating saga that's well worth another look.

12.45 pm Film4 Wed 23 June

The Day Will Dawn (1942)

Journalist aids Norwegian freedom fighters in their struggle against the Nazis.

Popular flag-waver that's faded a bit, but still works if you're in the mood.

1.10 pm Film4 Thur 24 June

The Thirty-Nine Steps (1959)

This might be more fondly remembered if it wasn't for the original which, despite its studio-bound scenes, beats this remake hands down. Kenneth More is the hero who gets himself chained to Taina Elg.

3.15 pm Film4 Thur 24 June

Waterloo Road (1944)

What's a lad to do when he comes back on leave to find his wife under the spell of the local spiv? Beat up the blighter!

One of the most fondly remembered films of the war seems a little cosy now, but it does examine the Home Front realities of the war at a time when you'd imagine most folk would prefer to ignore them.

1.10 pm Film4 Fri 25 June



Nothing this week.