Awful Paradise


TRAPPED IN A PARADISE OF EVIL AND DEATH? Say, what kind of paradise is this, anyway? A paradise of evil and death? That sounds like an AWFUL paradise!


Dudley Moore: When we go to heaven, they’re going to play this film to us, on a loop. As we burn.

Peter Cook: You don’t burn in heaven.

Dudley Moore: We will.

6 Responses to “Awful Paradise”

  1. A song I need on my iPod. I’ve never had the stomach to face the remake; if they did the song I don’t want to know about it.

    When I was a kid, we had a vicar who was very fond of the movie. He cited the scene of Lucifer’s fall (re-enacted with a mailbox) in a sermon. I’m still surprised at how theologically thoughtful it is behind the irreverence.

  2. The little I’ve seen of the remake is astonishingly bad, even considering the unsuitability of everyone concerned. No songs, I think. They threw out everything but the “high concept.”

    Cook couldn’t help but be somewhat thoughtful… oh wait, there’s Yellowbeard. Well, blame the co-writers for that, maybe.

    I was astonished to learn that the benighted pirate “comedy” was conceived in a conversation with Sam Peckinpah. Everyone got really enthused, recalled Cook, “and it was only when I saw Sam, who was physically too tired to go to the bathroom, relieving himself behind a potted plant, that I began to think the whole thing was unlikely to get off the ground.”

  3. bensondonald Says:

    Then there was “Hound of the Baskervilles”, one of the most disappointing comedies ever made. There were a handful of moments to stir false hopes and an impressive cast to leave one dreaming of a better movie.

    Cook and Moore faired better in “The Wrong Box”, which now plays a bit stodgily but is full of fun performances. Peter Sellers has a great cameo as a decrepit medico surrounded by cats. Cook is the sane one in those scenes.

    They have some decent conventional laughs in “Daring Young Men in Their Jaunty Jalopies”, a follow-up to “Flying Machines” that’s defeated in part by a plot that keeps most of the cast in separate little movies until near the end. Also, “Flying Machines” made its titular aircraft convincing, while there’s clear soundstage fakery in some of the presumably easier automotive stunts of “Jalopies”.

  4. Well, the one major accident on Flying Machines involved a motorcycle, so perhaps they were inclined to be careful and fake it when on the ground.

    ALL those films, and The Great Race and Mad, Man etc World are so disappointing. But probably I like Annakin’s two films best because of the supporting players. And The Wrong Box is a bit better than all of them: Ralph Richardson and Wilfred Lawson are particularly fine.

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