Whisky Galore!

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Scottish islanders try to plunder 50,000 cases of whisky from a stranded ship. A Highland fling on a tight little island

ACTORS : Basil Radford, Joan Greenwood, Catherine Lacey

YEAR OF RELEASE : 1949

SHIPPING COST : Australia Free

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Whisky Galore! Based on a true story. The name of the real ship, that sunk Feb 5 1941 – during WWII – was S/S Politician. Having left Liverpool two days earlier, heading for Jamaica, it sank outside Eriskay, The Outer Hebrides, Scotland, in bad weather, containing 250,000 bottles of whisky. The locals gathered as many bottles as they could, before the proper authorities arrived, and even today, bottles are found in the sand or in the sea every other year.

Captain Waggett (aka Mainwaring)

Whisky Galore! Delightful post-war British comedy illustrating for the umpteenth time the fighting spirit of the “ordinary Joe” (or in this case Jock) when set against the pomposity of the would-be ruling classes. Capt Waggett (Basil Radford) is the real star here as the middle class representative of stiff upper lippery. Surely Jimmy Perry and David Croft must have drawn on him when they were dreaming up the Capt Mainwaring character for the long-running BBC TV sit-com “Dad’s Army”. Even one of Waggett’s lines (“I was waiting to see when you’d spot that”, a comment usually made when Mainwaring had just uttered some piece of logistical nonsense) made an appearance. Unmissable example of British comedy rooted in the style that made Ealing so succesful.

Bottoms Up!

A Canadian friend turned me on to this film. Prior to that – about 10 years ago – I had never heard of it. I managed to find a video and watched it. This was, without question, one of the funniest flicks I had ever seen. Filmed in glorious black & white and mostly at night, it boasted some incredible character actors and a non-stop action plot involving whiskey. LOTS of whiskey. Some great cinematography and sets, moody typical-English fog-laden atmosphere and a giant A for effort what the townsfolk went thru to hold on to that liquor! Very funny, non-violent movie just for laughs. I strongly suggest you see it.

 

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