List Film

The Bargee (3 stars)

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The Bargee

(PG) 102min
(Optimum)

Forty years before Ewan McGregor shagged his way up and down the Edinburgh to Glasgow canal, Harry H Corbett was doing the same thing between Hertfordshire and Middlesex (oo-er). Corbett’s handsome Hemel Pike is a scruffy charmer not dissimilar to his vagabond prince in telly’s then current Steptoe and Son, so it’s no surprise that he’s got a girl in every town between Leg O Mutton Lock and Winkwell Swing Bridge. The barge-bound Casanova is aided by his illiterate cousin Ronnie (wee Ronnie Corbett) and foiled by the larger-than-life canal drinking champ Joe Turnball (Hugh Griffith), whose gorgeous daughter is up the duff. En route to matrimony or otherwise, there are plenty of laughs and many nicely eccentric period touches in an oddly undervalued post-war British comedy. Scripted by light entertainment veterans Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, it co-stars Eric Sykes, Derek Nimmo, Richard Briers and Una Stubbs. No extras.

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