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  Carry On Emmannuelle Carried Off
Year: 1978
Director: Gerald Thomas
Stars: Kenneth Williams, Kenneth Connor, Joan Sims, Jack Douglas, Peter Butterworth, Larry Dann, Suzanne Danielle, Beryl Reid, Henry McGee, Victor Maddern, Merlyn Ward, Dino Shafeek, Eric Barker, Joan Benham, James Fagan, Claire Davenport, Bruce Boa
Genre: Comedy, TrashBuy from Amazon
Rating:  2 (from 3 votes)
Review: Emmannuelle Prevert (Suzanne Danielle) is travelling from her native France to Britain where her husband (Kenneth Williams) is ambassador. She is a nymphomaniac, and growing bored by the journey even though it is on the supersonic aircraft Concorde, starts looking around for some male attention. The steward manages to compose himself when she runs her hand up his leg, but a fellow passenger, Theodore Valentine (Larry Dann), is entranced and when she gives him a come hither look they meet up in the bathroom. For Emmannuelle it's just another encounter, but Theodore is smitten...

Carry On Emmannuelle was the final of the original run of Carry On movies, and a sorry conclusion it was at that. Scripted by Lance Peters among others, this was the team's attempt to keep up with the times and add something raunchier to the tried and tested formula which was now looking like a tired and testing formula. It had not escaped producer Peter Rogers' attention that what was making money in British comedy was of the calibre of the Confessions series and their imitators, so this film became just that: an imitator.

However, Suzanne Danielle apart the cast were made up of the usual stalwarts, or at least those who were desperate enough to appear, and there was an alarming tendency here for them to get into situations that were very much beneath them. For some reason regular director Gerald Thomas made sure to get the actors to take their clothes off, which would be fine if it was only Miss Danielle, but the true horror of seeing Kenneth Williams naked was not something you would wish on the British film industry, not to mention Kenneth Connor in his underpants.

Not all of them disrobe, for which we must be thankful, but you do get to see Joan Sims trying to be sultry with her bra on her head, something akin to witnessing someone's grandmother in an inappropriate situation. This bit occurs in the sequence where Emmannuelle coaxes the staff of her husband's mansion house to tell her of their most notable sexual experiences, which should give you some idea of the queasy nature of the humour. There's not even much of a plot, with the heroine demeaning herself by seducing every man she meets passing for a story.

And all the men she does seduce are about twice her age, which makes this an embarrassing experience at best. It's as if the conventions of Carry On, which had broad humour for the kids and witty innuendo for the adults, had settled on blatant sex talk and leering sleaziness to pass for its jokes, deserting the family audience once and for all and missing all its targets by miles. Typical jokes have Williams' impotence explained away by a nude parachute jump that ended with him impaled on a church steeple - his scream of pain is truly bloodcurdling - or Emmannuelle stripping off for a guard at Buckingham palace to find he does not react because he is gay. For some reason Carry On England is now regarded as the worst, but really, the series didn't get any more depressing than this. Music by Eric Rogers.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

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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.

 
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