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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Peter Sellers 5-Film DVD Collection (Lionsgate/The Smallest Show on Earth/Carlton Browne of the F.O./Iím All Right Jack/Two-Way Stretch/Heavenís Above!)

Peter Sellers 5-Film DVD Collection (Lionsgate/The Smallest Show on Earth/Carlton Browne of the F.O./Iím All Right Jack/Two-Way Stretch/Heavenís Above!)


Picture: B- ††††Sound: C+††† Extras: C †††Films:


The Smallest Show on Earth B-

Carlton Browne of the F.O. B-

Iím All Right Jack B

Two-Way Stretch B

Heavenís Above B-



There is no doubt in anyoneís mind that Peter Sellers is perhaps one of the most versatile actors of all time, his ability to morph into a variety of odd characters is first-rate and now we have the ability to see several of his works in this terrific set from Lionsgate, included in the set are several of Sellers lesser known films, but fans will be glad to be able to get 5 of these comedic films for a moderate price.


In this set we have 1957ís The Smallest Show on Earth, which newlyweds inherit a small-town cinema that includes a wacky crew including Sellers as the hilarious drunken projectionist, along with cashier (Margaret Rutherford) and usher/janitor (Bernard Miles).The comedy runs rampant as our cast of misfits riff off each other.


Then we have 1959ís Carlton Browne of the F.O. which is a strange film involving mineral deposits that are discovered in the British colony of Gaillardia and now a Foreign Office investigator (Terry Thomas) must negotiate with Prime Minister Amphibulos (Sellers), but they end up splitting the tiny island in half and this in turn sparks a international nuclear standoff.


Also in 1959 we have Iím All Right Jack starring Sellers as a socialist shop steward in a missile plant and his newly hired Oxford graduate (Ian Carmichael) who finds himself stuck between the union and the family business, which ends up in a comedy showdown of epic proportions.Of course Sellers character uses the young man and pits him against his own using his political persuasive in hilarious form.†††


Two-Way Stretch is 1960ís comedy in which Sellers plays a criminal mastermind locked up behind bars and while there formulates a plan to break out, which involves stealing diamonds from a military convoy and then breaking back into the jail all in one night.Itís a silly affair, but Sellers and the cast make the moments work.


Finally we get 1963ís Heavenís Above, which oddly enough has Sellers this time as the prison chaplain, who is assigned to a wealthy parish, but when he insists on ministering to the rich and the poor he ends up offending both groups and finds himself in the middle of a social/economic crisis.Itís definitely Sellerís mastery that keeps the pace moving and allows for comedy to ensue in places it might never have otherwise.


The good news here also is that each film is presented in itís original British aspect ratio of 1.66 X 1 and while more restoration is needed to bring these films into pristine order, they look good for their age and considered this is a bundle deal, itís a set that has value in that alone.The Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono sound is acceptable again for its origins and limitations associated with mono, but given that these were originally in mono they work just fine, it would have been great to get an option of stereo as well, but purists and fans will have no objections.



-†† Nate Goss


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