HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Unseen, The
Tonight She Comes
Chasing the Dragon
Into the Forest
Limehouse Golem, The
Frankenstein '80
Good Time
Bucket of Blood, A
Detroit
Hide and Seek
What Happened to Monday
River Wild, The
Veteran
Slumber Party '57
Juliette, or Key of Dreams
Summertime Killer
Sweet Virginia
Ben & Arthur
Your Name
Red Hot Shot, The
New World
Trick Baby
Weapons of Death
Second Best Secret Agent in the Whole Wide World, The
Kills on Wheels
Strait-Jacket
This Man is Dangerous
Burning Paradise
Away
Mistress of the Apes
   
 
Newest Articles
Apocalypse 80s UK: Threads and When the Wind Blows
Movie Flop to Triumphant TV Revival: Twin Peaks and The League of Gentlemen
Driving Force: The Golden Age of American Car Chases
Madness in his Method: Jim Carrey and Andy Kaufman
Music, Love and Flowers: Monterey Pop on Blu-ray
The Melville Mood: His Final Two Films on The Melville Collection Blu-ray
Always Agnès: 3 from The Varda Collection Blu-ray
Re: Possession of Vehicles - Killer Cars, Trucks and a Vampire Motorcycle
The Whicker Kicker: Whicker's World Vols 5&6 on DVD
The Empress, the Mermaid and the Princess Bride: Three 80s Fantasy Movies
   
 
  Carry On Columbus These aren't the Indians you were looking for...Buy this film here.
Year: 1992
Director: Gerald Thomas
Stars: Jim Dale, Bernard Cribbins, Julian Clary, Alexei Sayle, Sara Crowe, June Whitfield, Leslie Phillips, Maureen Lipman, Richard Wilson, Jack Douglas, Rebecca Lacey, Rik Mayall, Adrian Edmonson, Peter Richardson, Charles Fleischer, Larry Miller, Keith Allen
Genre: Comedy, Historical
Rating:  4 (from 2 votes)
Review: In the year of 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue…

Well, he would if he could find a map and someone to pay for his voyage. Convinced that there was a sea route to the East, he was determined to gain for himself all the riches currently being claimed in taxes on all goods passing through his country by the Sultan of Turkey. When Mordecai, a very recent 'convert' from Judaism, appears with the document he needs, he sets off to see the King and Queen of Spain to secure a ship. Hot on his trail are Fatima and Achmed, the Sultan's best (and worst) agents, to stop Columbus at all costs and make sure the Sultan's wealth doesn't vanish.

After securing a ship, a motley crew, and surviving several sabotage attempts, they finally reach land. But it does not appear that this shore is home to the Indians they were expecting...

Carry On Columbus can best be described as very, very thinly spread Marmite. Those who don't like it, really don't like it. And those who do like it (like myself) seem to regard it as an OK flick, not particularly good, but average to middling in parts. But could have been much more...

This is due in a large way to the challenges they faced during production and with an audience that had moved on from the Seventies.

Trying to release a film about Columbus in 1992 wasn't in any way unique, but it did mean that you couldn't overrun the 500th Anniversary of his voyage. So time was tight, and as such, required rewrites were hurried, casting bordered on the "Are you available? Then you’re hired" approach, and post-production was rushed through in a very haphazard way. And it was then shown to audiences who either felt too nostalgic for the classics of their youth, or didn't get the purpose of a Carry On.

But that does the film a disservice.

Yes there are poor performances, terrible lines, dodgy sets and tacky production values, certainly. But there's still worth there. Bernard Cribbins gives his all as Mordecai, and whilst Jim Dale goes over the top on occasion, he throws everything into the role of Columbus. Some of the newcomers get the point of a Carry On (Julian Clary, Alexei Sayle and the lovely Sara Crowe especially) and there are some wonderfully delivered jokes in the script that are worth waiting for, my favorite being between Rebecca Lacey and Jack Douglas, who set up and deliver a punchline about sharks that is delightful.

The Americans (for 'tis they that Columbus discovers) hit just the right note of Brooklyn condescension towards these ignorant visitors, even down to the broad accents and attitudes.

And if more proof was needed, consider the other two major commemorative films of the year - Christopher Columbus: The Discovery, and 1492: Conquest Of Paradise - cost $45 million and $47 million respectively to make, whilst Columbus cost less than $3 million, and yet the Carry On effort out performed both of its big budget rivals at the box office.

Is Carry On Columbus a good film? Well.... no.

Is it the worst Carry On? Most certainly not. Anyone who has sat through Carry On Emmannuelle will know that...
Reviewer: Paul Shrimpton

 

This review has been viewed 761 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 

Gerald Thomas  (1920 - 1993)

British director responsible for every film in the Carry On series. Started as an assistant editor before debuting with the childrens' film Circus Friends. Thriller Timelock followed, but the success of 1958’s bawdy Carry On Sergeant launched one of the most successful series in British cinema. Thomas directed 30 Carry On films up until 1978’s Carry On Emmannuelle, returning in 1992 to deliver his final film, Carry On Columbus. Other films include the Carry On-esque Nurse on Wheels and The Big Job, plus the big screen version of Bless this House.

 
Review Comments (2)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Who's the best?
Robin Askwith
Mark Wahlberg
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
Paul Shrimpton
  Rachel Franke
Jason Cook
Darren Jones
Keith Rockmael
   

 

Last Updated: