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HALL OF FAMEon 22 August 2009
The Foreman Went to France:
(And please note that elements of the plot are just about to be discussed.) In 1940 deep in France, three special purpose machines sent from Britain to turn out guns for fighter planes sit in an abandoned factory right in the path of the advancing Germans. In London, one of the foremen from the British factory that produced the machines is determined to get them back to Britain. The Germans are just as determined to locate the machines. Fred Carrick (Clifford Evans), who can't speak French and has never traveled outside England, winds up on a French train heading toward the town where the machines are located. When he gets there, he discovers a young American woman, Anne Stafford (Constance Cummings), who worked at the factory and who stayed to burn important documents. Then two Tommies, Tommy Hoskins (Tommy Trinder) and Jock MacFarlane (Gordon Jackson), show up with a transport truck filled with hundreds of tins of curry powder. Fred quickly enlists their help. With a bit of shrewdness and good luck, they are able to deal with a fifth columnist working for the Germans and set out with the machines in the back of the lorry. Carrick's adventure is just beginning.

Fred Carrick finally gets his machines back to England, but only after experiencing a range of obstacles that would have defeated a man less imbued with British values than he. On the way to the French coast, he, Anne, Tommy and Jock see first hand what the Germans are doing...roads clogged with dazed refugees, German fighters indiscriminately strafing civilians, orphans left silent or hysterical as the nun who was taking care of them is shot and killed, a burning city glowing in the night, a hospital bombed, fifth columnists and traitors working for the Germans. And all the while, the German army is advancing right behind them. Propaganda? Absolutely, and not bad propaganda, either.

The Foreman Went to France works so well because it combines adventure, humor, resourcefulness and British pluck in an engrossing story. The message turns dark as we see what the Germans have in store for everyone, but then turns hopeful as we see how courage and resoluteness can win. Sure, the movie is dated, but in its time I suspect it was a very effective piece of work, especially as it was based on a true story. Today, it holds up well because the adventures are exciting, the cast does a good job...and who doesn't want to be on the side of the good guys against Hitler and his armies?

Fiddlers Three:
I've not seen this one but it's described as a Tommy Trinder vehicle of corny jokes and leggy girls set in ancient Rome. Trinder rose to the top through England's music halls and went on to films, radio and TV. He sings, prances, tells jokes and has a lot of teeth. He can be brash but he's also likeable. Probably my favorite Trinder movie of those I've watched is Champagne Charlie, a raucous ode to England's music halls of 150 years ago. Half of the movie is one song after another as Trinder and Stanley Holloway battle it out to be the top music hall performer of the age.

My recommendation:
The Foreman Went to France is a favorite of mine. I think it's worth getting regardless of what you might eventually think of Fiddlers Three. As far as I know, this is the only release of Foreman on DVD. Might as well pick up the DVD of Champagne Charlie while you're at it.
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on 25 March 2009
That EALING production, directed by CHARLES FREND, was released in May 1942. It was released in America under the title SOMEWHERE IN FRANCE.
The propaganda was needed and it was based on a true story. It was not heavily handed.
TOMMY TRINDER and GORDON JACKSON(character named Jock, what else?), two soldiers help the British foreman to retrieve secret equipment, before the advancing german armies (we are in 1940) get it.
Their journey to the coast is hazardous and it has some humour, but it's still war.
The film is very well written and directed.
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on 4 November 2011
When the films on this DVD came out at the cinema I was only seven or eight years old. Needless to say, at that age I enjoyed them! Yes they are dated now, but so am I!! If you want to see what made joe public laugh during the worrying time around 1940 then this should do the job. If you are looking for realism or consumate acting - forget it, standards have improved no end but I doubt if efforts to entertain the cinema going public have got any better.
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on 31 July 2012
The reason I purchased this book was for the "Foreman went to France". It's not a bad bit of slapstick comedy and you need to be interested in the Spitfire WW2 fighter or in particular the "Hispano Cannon, to really understand what it's all about, ie. the tooling that was to be recovered from France was special tooling to make the cannon which was fitted to later MK Spit's and other planes and had a huge impact on fire power, that aside if you like Tommy Trinder and a bit of slapstick comedy it's not a bad buy. As for Fiddlers Three it's worth a look.
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on 16 October 2015
Bought this for The Foreman Went To France, an old Black and White film, that I remember seeing on the TV when I was a child. This is a propaganda so don't expect too much from it but it gives a good idea of the times for which it was made, with the British showing pluck in adversity.
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on 6 February 2014
This film was shown on the tv years ago, and I thought I would never see it again, so it was a good deal to get it and fiddlers three on the one dvd package, usually the sellers have it delivered the day before they say they will deliver it. Mine came the first day of delivery,so you really can not get better than that. I will use this seller again. To Young.
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on 18 August 2011
I'm not too familiar with older British films, but wanted to see Gordon Jackson as a young lad, and bought this DVD. I didn't have high expectation about either films, but was pleasantly surprised by both. The Foreman Went to France proved a nice mixture of drama and comedy, with the underlying reality of war, and despite the (natural) amount of propaganda, the film was interesting and entertaining. Fiddlers Three is completely nonsense with the plot of Stonehenge turning into time-machine etc., but as it clearly has been meant as "nonsense", it gave many a good giggle. The DVD offered two very pleasant film-evenings!
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on 27 December 2013
Great old films which reflect a different time and portray a different outlook on life. I enjoyed them for that and for their portrayal of some of the finer qualities that people are capable of. Definately films of the old school and of their time.
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on 21 March 2009
Usual Tommy Trinder stuff. The first one is a propaganda war fillm & the second is a farse set in Rome.If you like Tommy you should like this set. The first has him & his mate helping a British forman to retrive aircraft making machines from France before the advancing Germans. The second has him & two pals in the navy but ending up in Rome with Nero due to a mishap in a thunder storm.
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on 27 October 2015
At last Ive found it. Saw this film years ago on the BBC, its a classic. THE FOREMAN WENT TO FRANCE ,(with Jock and a LMG Bren Gun called Brenda) Not forgetting DUNKIRK, ICE COLD IN ALEX, REACH FOR THE SKY.A marathone of vintage classics, Who said retirement was all TV soaps.10/10
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