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Expresso Bongo (Collector's Edition)

Cliff Richard , Laurence Harvey , Val Guest    Parental Guidance   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
Price: 14.99
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Frequently Bought Together

Expresso Bongo (Collector's Edition) + Serious Charge [1959] [DVD] + Two a Penny [DVD] [1970]
Price For All Three: 43.52

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Product details

  • Actors: Cliff Richard, Laurence Harvey, Sylvia Syms, Yolande Donlan
  • Directors: Val Guest
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: DD Home Entertainment
  • Run Time: 102 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000KSYP44
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 51,013 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Cliff Richard stars as Bongo Herbert, a young singer playing for peanuts in Soho's coffee bars, surrounded by striptease shows, clip joints and teenage dens. He becomes an overnight success when taken up by unscrupulous showbusiness agent Johnny (Laurence Harvey), but at what price? This classic film, based on the acclaimed West End musical, is packed with punch and includes the hit single 'Voice in the Wilderness' and 'I've Never Had It So Good'. Cliff's co-stars inlude Yolande Donlan as man-crazy American singer Dixie Collins and Sylvia Syms, cast against type as a dancer in a strip show. Special Features included on this 'Collector's Edition' - Audio commentary with producer / director Val Guest, co-star Yoland Donlan and film historian Marcus Hearn - Specially filmed interview with Val Guest - Original theatrical trailer - Picture gallery, including rare behind-the-scenes images - Look at Life: 'Coffee Bars' (1959 colour short film).

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Expresso Bongo 24 Sep 2010
Format:DVD
To put it bluntly this is an underrated film all round...

Consider Cliff Richard, barely out of an electrical factory job in Hertfordshire some months previously, with his spot at the 2 I's club in Soho only a recent memory and teamed up with the early Shadows line up...

not forgetting he had no acting training prior to being discovered singing at the 2 I's club in Soho he does a good job.

The story is quite shocking when you consider the content of some aspects when this story was made.

For instance the swearword 'bastard' is used at least 4 times when this sort of language rarely appearred at this time in films that (through Cliff's appearance in the film) would be likely to be seen by younger people.

The film is based in London's Soho, an area of London with a reputation for criminality from drugs, gambling, vice, prostitution and black marketeering and that was in the 1950's!

The story has adult themes in it, a strip club where I don't know how the 'costumes' were got past the strict censors of the day as they are minimal, street walking prostitutes inviting people 'upstairs', a strip club 'dancer' living with her agent/promoter and not married (remember it was 1959/60)!

The story is almost a biog of early Cliff Richard, a young singer discovered with his backing group in a coffee bar

This film takes that early plot and life almost imitates art as in the film he is signed up by a wide boy agent (later the contract is found to be null and void).

The machinations and cut and thrust of the recording industry moguls and the chancers like the Laurence Harvey charachter 'Johnny' are played out superbly.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Where are all the songs? 11 Jun 2004
Format:DVD
Kino, get with it. Couldn't you find a complete version of Expresso Bongo. Laurence Harvey's 3 songs are missing. I know that because my vhs recording from 23 years ago has them intact. Any chance of getting a complete version on the market. You've turned an above average movie into a below average movie.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good, actually... 10 Nov 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
All right, so the film is dated, and Cliff is pretty wet, but he keeps his end up. On the other hand, Laurence Harvey as the dodgy Soho bottom-feeder is a joy from start to finish, as is Sylvia Syms as his long-suffering stripper girlfriend. The script is sharp and funny. What's not to enjoy?
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Where is the complete film? 6 July 2011
By A. W. Wilson TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
This is a spur of the moment note. I have had two versions of this DVD inc the Collector's edition. Neither of them are complete (eg Meier Tzelniker's "Nausea" and I think Harvey's songs). The Kino DVD states here on Amazon that it runs 111' which is the official BBFC duration from 1960. Yet a reviewer states that isn't complete either. Is there a complete version anywhere in existence, and if so, why do 3 apparently seperate companies issue incomplete versions? I also wish Amazon could find a way of making sure that a review of a particular version/release appears only under that title. At the moment, any review of one copy appears under all the ones advertised, so you can get in a bit of a muddle. (It's a good film tho, even tho it is incomplete).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Memories from way back when..... 2 Feb 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I've enjoyed this DVD of Cliff, how young and naive we were, but I wouldn't have want to miss it for anything in the world! It was a great time! Espresso Bongo... yes a nice film!
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