Carry On Teacher [DVD]
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When Carry On Teacher was released in 1959, the series was still in its infancy but all the familiar constituent parts were already in place. Innuendo, naturally, reigns supreme and on the brink of the permissive 1960s it's surprising what Peter Rodgers and the gang were able to get away with. "Are you satisfied with your equipment, Miss Allcock?", child psychologist Leslie Phillips asks gym mistress Joan Sims. Naturally, it isn't five minutes before Miss Allcock's shorts have split, leading to a series of pants gags. And we're off. For Carry On fans, Teacher contains many of the funniest lines and certainly some of the best performances from the whole series. Kenneth Williams is still acting rather than giving his mannerisms a good work out. Hattie Jacques is establishing her gorgon-with-a-soft-centre-for-the-right-man persona and Charles Hawtrey's birdlike twitching makes him ideal as the precious music teacher. A youthful Carol White and Richard O'Sullivan are among the scheming pupils. But you don't have to be a diehard Carry On fan to appreciate the boisterous, sub-St Trinians comedy. And thanks to Ted Ray's poignant acting as the headmaster, there's a real moment of Mr Chips-style bathos at the very end.
On the DVD: Carry On Teacher doesn't gain much from being presented in widescreen. Much of its appeal lies in its familiarity. All we ask for is a clear print--and in black and white this is diamond sharp--and decent sound quality. The whole thing fits like a comfortable old shoe. But apart from the scene index there are no extras on the disc. Given the cult status of the Carry On films, and the wealth of documentary material which has been made about them and their stars, you'd think something extra could have been offered with the DVD releases to make them a more worthwhile alternative to the video. --Piers FordSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
"Teacher" is a warm hearted entry in the series, choosing prat-falls and genial set-pieces for its comedy. The teachers bicker and crack under the strain of the kids pranks and sabotages, while there's also a couple of nice romantic threads bubbling away. Also of note is the not so sly debate on corporal punishment, Wakefield is firmly against it, while robust Maths teacher Grace Short (Hattie Jacques) is the other end of the scale - she's cane mad! There's a feminist angle as well, adding some more depth to Norman Hudis' screenplay.
Ultimately though it's about the laughs, about the chaos, and watching the series regulars go about their way with skill and tongues in cheek. A hit at the box office, Carry On Teacher is quintessentially an early Carry On movie, with wry social observations and a harmless naivety towards the education system, there's not much to dislike here. 8/10
Made in 1959 just as the series was getting started, Carry on Teacher lacks much of the bawdiness and naughty irreverence that made the later movies such a riot. But what it lacks in sexual innuendo, it certainly makes up for in silly slapstick and clever one-liners.
The basic plot revolves around the arrival to Maudlin Street School of the education inspectors, Alistair Grigg (Leslie Phillips) and Felicity Wheeler (Rosalind Knight). Ted Ray (William Wakefield) the headmaster of the School has a problem. The students run his school, and the teachers are more or less happy to just keep going, but Ray wants to leave and go teaching at a shiny new modern school being built in the country
The pupils actually like the teachers deep down, and believe that by sabotaging the inspection, they'll make their beloved Headmaster unemployable anywhere else, and he'll be forced to stay. The kids carry out a number of pranks on the unsuspecting teachers - including interrupting their classes, spraying inching powder over their chairs, and spiking their morning cup of tea with alcohol.
Ted is embarrassed by what is going on and the inspection report is thrown into chaos. The teachers are perplexed and frustrated, but all is not lost as the inspector and then, naturally, there are the inevitable love stories arising between the inspectors and two teachers in which more zaniness and mistaken identity ensues.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
'Carry on Teaching' is something of the forgotten 'Carry On', you sure don't hear many people placing it as one of their favourites. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Brit Boy
The Carry On series started quite well with the Sergeant, Teacher and Nurse titles. They were not great art but they were funny for their times. Read morePublished on 29 Sept. 2011 by Lord Anon