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The Great St. Trinian's Train Robbery is one of my all-time favourite films. An absolutely brilliant comedy caper, truly the best of British. As a keen railway enthusiast and lover of trains, I ADORE it. This is a film that cleverly blended the magic of steam with the spirit of wild, uncontrollable, rebellious school kids, wonderful humour and slapstick, the story of a cracking train heist and the old good-natured honest notion of `It's alright to be bent."

Train Robbery was the fourth and final chapter of the original series of St. Trinian's films, and I do NOT understand at all why fellow Amazon reviewers rank this film so lowly. While I admit I have yet to see any of the previous films (and look forward to doing so), I think it's very unfair to judge this so harshly SOLELY by comparing it to the others. Whether or not they were superior, I do not know, but that is irrelevant when one should be reviewing Train Robbery's individual merits.

The story is simple; The headmistress of St. Trinian's (wonderfully played by Dora Bryan) is the lover of the corrupt Minister of Schools. Now armed with a great big government grant, she re-houses her staff and pupils in a great big house, Hamingwell Grange. Unbeknownst to the school, a great circle of train robbers - headed by the anonymous `Governor' with Frankie Howerd as his second-in-command - have stashed £2.5 million under the ballroom stage. Before long, a great big battle of wits ensues as a chase for all the swag is on.

The simplicity of the film is beauty itself. In both presentation and execution, Train Robbery is an absolute charm, sporting a colourful cast of characters, top-notch comedy antics and cracking dialogue. Dora Bryan and the late, great Frankie Howerd turn in excellent performances here, as does everyone else. It's just one of those good-natured, harmless pieces of cinema that invites families to sit back and simply enjoy together. It's a wonderful romp that goes at the right pace and runs for just the right time at ninety-minutes (Unlike a lot of today's movies that seem intent on dragging on for two/three hours at least). This proves that less is clearly more.

Of course, the majority of the film is just build-up to the climax. Not to say that the film is terrible throughout because it isn't in the least, but the highlight by a MILE is the WICKED train chase at the end. This is just twenty-minutes of absolutely relentless thrills, excitement and hilarities. The laughs just keep piling on here and is directed with absolute perfection thanks to Frank Launder and Sidney Gilliat.

For those who wish to complete their collection of St. Trinian's films, then purchase of The Great St. Trinian's Train Robbery is essential. As a stand-alone film, it's a true classic that will appeal to fans of comedy, British cinema and mad capers. Families will love it, and lovers of steam will love it. There's no extras or subtitles here unfortunately, but it's an absolute bargain. And the fantastic quality of the DVD transfer is remarkable. No question, a wonderful film indeed.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 25 March 2016
The fourth part of the St. Trinian's themed films is the first to be shot in colour, and also the point where someone should have realised that this series had run out of steam. Based on Ronald Searle's demonic schoolgirls, this outing cribs off of the topical Great Train Robbery of the 60s, retains George Cole as a reassuring presence, while adding Dora Bryan and Frankie Howerd for some acting solidification.

It's not a bad film as such, in fact the last quarter, where a whole host of train shenanigans come into play, is great fun, it's just that it feels tired, less risky, like the makers were hedging their bets to get a box office winner (which came to fruition). Fast framing is a bit of a cheat, Howerd is wasted - or sleepwalking through the film? But Bryan is on hand for a bit of quality while the girls are all boisterous and minxy.

Enjoyable enough for those so inclined, even if it's utterly forgettable come the final credits. 6/10
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Probably the weakest of the superb Frank Launder & Sidney Gilliat 'St Trinians' film series and actually not helped by being in colour. That said, it's by no means unwatchable, and can raise a few titters. Made a few years after the real Great Train Robbery, the films plot revolves around the schoolgirl's trying to foil an attempt by train robbers to recover two and a half million pounds hidden in their school - surely though it's the girls who should be the criminal masterminds, although this lot wouldn't last 5 minutes against their older schoolmates from the original movie. While the first, far darker film 'The Belles of St Trinians' [1954], with Alistair Sims, Joyce Grenfell & George Cole, is essential viewing, this final outing is more in the 'carry on' mould - although it's none the worse for that and does have a real period charm. Sadly Alistair Sims declined to continue his headmistress role in the sequel Blue Murder at St Trinians [1956] other than a short cameo, although this is made up for by the inclusion of the superbly caddish Terry Thomas.

The St Trinians films are based on the 1940/50s dark (but very funny) cartoons of Ronald Searle, which were themselves inspired by Edinburgh's real St Trinneans School [1920] where discipline was encouraged to be self rather than school imposed - leading to the jibe that the girls were taught to do whatever they want. Searle met a few former pupils during the war and the cartoons evolved from his jokes with them (The real school closed in 1946 when the headmistress retired). For the original Searle cartoons, see the book St. Trinian's: The Entire Appalling Business.

Assuming you fancy this movie, I'd buy the good value four film The St Trinians Collection DVD set, where you get the original three classic B&W St Trinian movies as well - although none of these St Trinians DVDs have subtitles or any extras to speak of. This set has the 2nd sequel Pure Hell of St Trinians [1957] thats so-so but still well worth watching (it's actually worth owning just for the superb first few opening scenes). All these films were made by the great Frank Launder & Sidney Gilliat team (Blue Lagoon, The lady Vanishes, Happiest days of your life, etc..), and the first three St Trinians are at least the equal of the best Ealing Comedies - but this last 1966 one is more like a decent 'Carry On' movie. The riotous finale train chase sequence drags on a touch, but the movie's earlier caricature of Britain in the 1960s is often delightful (particularly to those like me who remember the era as a child - I was 10 when I saw this movie at first release in 1966).

It's got a top notch enthusiastic Brit cast as well, e.g. George Cole, Dora Bryan, Frankie Howard, Reg Varney, Richard Wattis, Eric Barker, Stratford Johns, and Arthur Mullard [Joyce Grenfell sadly refused to take part] - and although the schoolgirls get a back seat to the film's adult stars, I still prefer this movie to the latest slicker 2007 'St Trinians' [that featured the girls a tad more] - although younger viewers like my teenage daughter seem to rate these new films far more highly (she has happily watched this old Great St Trinians Train Robbery movie once though and quite enjoyed it). Also check out Frank Launder & Sidney Gilliat's earlier [1950] school-comedy movie The Happiest Days Of Your Life starring Alastair Sim and Margaret Rutherford that's very sympathetic to these old St Trinians films and is now finally available on DVD .
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The fourth St Trinians film and the first to be made in colour, this one provides plenty of laughs from a smorgasbord of much loved British comedians. Some fans of the series have had reservations about this one that does not have the emblematic Alastair Sim as the corrupt headmistress of St Trinians. In this one Dora Bryan takes over as Amber Spottiswood who has a similar rather relaaxed attitude to schooling as her esteemed predecessor. Bryan in fact makes a very good fist of things, and it is easy to forget what a fine comedienne she was! The film retains George Cole, Richard Wattis, Eric Barker, Michael Ripper and Raymond Huntley from the original cast members. Add those comic galacticos Frankie Howard, Reg Varney and Terry Scott and you have a very nice mix indeed.

This time the plot uses a `Great Train Robbery' type crime to good comic effect. The rather inept bandits decide to hide their loot in an abandoned building. Unfortunately for them it is to become the new home of St Trinians School. Robbers...be afraid....be very afraid! The film has a lovely sixties look to it, which I guess is unsurprising as it was made in 1966! A very good year I recall! There are bucket loads of fun to be had and the usual sixth formers dressed to fulfil any schoolboys fantasy. The lovely railway scenes at the films conclusion are a particular highlight. These were filmed on the Longmoor Military Railway, closed since 1969. How nice to see those old steam trains strutting their stuff! A hugely enjoyable addition to the series!
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on 4 March 2010
If any of you love Frankie howard then this film is for you. Its a great play on the real Great train robbery with the laughter and games that only frankie howard can bring to the screen. A Must have for anyone who likes these old fun films.
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on 29 August 2015
Here's a film that deserves to be transferred to blu-ray even though the DVD quality is well above average.
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on 26 May 2013
This film is close to my heart as my aunt and uncle did hair and makeup for it. Two stories one of the engines fell of the line and local army boys had to put it back and when the points leaver goes into the pond that really happened and they did actually have to find it. So go on buy it its well worth it.
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on 12 February 2013
quite thrilling film. frankie howard holds the film together with humourous quotes.
filmed in colour which differs it from previous ones.
train chase quite well done with obvious catching of thieves.
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on 17 August 2012
So funny. Its the one of the best ST Trinians I've seen. My daughter loves it too. There are a few old stars in it and it never seems to tire. Watched it half a dozen times now and still find it hillarious.
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on 11 January 2014
old classic film they do not make such any more there is no other comedy like old comedy films fantastic acting with franie howard and a cast of well known acters to many to list
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