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The Steptoe movies...

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The Steptoe movies...

Postby Graham_S nli » Wed Aug 16, 2006 7:56 pm

My nephew popped over to my house yesterday and finally brought back my Steptoe movies "double bill" DVD ( both he and my brother-in-law are big fans as well ).

I decided to have a watch of both as I'm off work at the moment taking a well deserved break ( IMHO of course... ).

One thing I really noticed was I much more preferred the second film as it was a lot more episodic in it's approach where a couple of situations were strung together to finally wind up with it's quite funny ending while the first was quite a morose tale about Harold's doomed marriage to Stripper Zeta ( although the "OMO moment" when Albert takes a bath in the kitchen sink still brings a hearty laugh! ) ...

No mention of the marriage in "Murder In Oil Drum Lane" , did Ray Galton and John Antrobus feel they could forget these films as part of the plot...

Hercules also did a bit of a "Lazarus" with his resurrection and retirement in the second film....

Anyone prefer the first to the second film and why?

and just if you wondered my nephew borrowed my "the very best of...." which I assume was the reason why his father wanted him to drop off the films.... and no he won't keep this one as long as the films!!!!!
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Postby bob » Thu Aug 17, 2006 8:15 pm

I much prefer the second film.

While the first film has all the right ingredients, too much time is spent away from Oil Drum Lane, which is where the Steptoes’ are at their best. I also like the moment with the baby in the stable and the three tramps.

The second film is set right in the Steptoe’s back yard. It is also a much darker film. Many people overlook just how black Galton and Simpson’s humour can be.

I love the scene immediately after they have hoodwinked the doctor. Albert lying on the bed trapped under a manikin and Harold tapping on the window with the dummies head.

The line of the film (for me) is Albert cooking Harold’s breakfast while he nurses a hangover. “Did I bring a bag in with me last night” asks Harold, “Oh Gawd”, said Albert “Not a bird as well”!!!
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Postby Graham_S nli » Thu Aug 17, 2006 11:27 pm

On reflection the most striking moment within the second film for me was the funeral scene...

We had a really low key funeral due to them pulling the insurance con which disappointedly meant no Steptoe relatives to add to the fun while we watch Albert fume upstairs while Arthur, Aida et al berate him for his ways while he was living ( although in the film they did get Yootha Joyce to throw a couple of barbs in which nearly ended with Albert coming downstairs to give her a piece of his mind.... )

When the inpromptu totter mourners took over, the actor Neil McCarthy told Harold that they wanted to send Albert out in a proper totter funeral as their way of life was finishing shortly due to the fact all the old houses were being pulled down around them in Sheperds Bush ( I actually remember them building the White City Estate as I visted the area at the time to watch QPR play and went dog racing at White City in the early 80's.... )

This turned out to be so true...... I remember in my childhood in Cricklewood during the 70's seeing real totters shouting "rag and bone" on their horse and carts but they just seemed to die out by the start of the 80's due to the take, make and throw away culture that cheap mass production had on society at the time...
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Postby Archie » Sun Dec 24, 2006 5:40 pm

I got the movie double DVD yesterday , I have them both on video but the quality isn't too good on the second movie.

I also have the first movie on DVD that the Sun gave away last year, but I have waited for year's to watch a good copy of 'Ride Again'.

I'll watch it tonight - Christmas Eve :D
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Postby Rian » Wed Jun 06, 2007 8:10 pm

Ive got the first movie and ive watched it over and over it again lol
I really wanna see the movir....it was on bbc2 a few weeks ago aswell :(

I cnt wait for my bday on saturday cos im gonna get the series
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Postby Albie » Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:59 am

i think i also prefer the second film.. the opening is just hilarious.
On reflection it does seem that the films were different storys set aside from the series.. if that makes sense!? ie hercules coming back to life
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Postby Ahrold! » Thu Aug 09, 2007 10:47 pm

I'm a huge fan of the series, utter genius from all involved but the films......? I find something just wrong about them, the incidental music depresses me, why I don't know.
One thing I've always wanted to know is the layout of the house in the films.....is it completley different or are we just viewing it from a different angle? Either way, I am som "comfortable" in the house from the series, the film version of the house just seems too alien to enjoy
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Postby Rian » Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:46 pm

The only thing that doesnt make sense is that the house and yard is comepletly different
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Postby bob » Sat Aug 11, 2007 8:12 am

It was the fashion in the 70’s to take popular TV series and turn them into movies. On the Buses, George and Mildred, Dad’s Army all got the big screen treatment. I think it is true that in each case that their homes and places of work all looked completely different in the film versions.

Looking at the Steptoe films in particular ; I do think a lot of people forget that Galton and Simpson wrote quite a lot of ‘black’ comedy.

This is particularly true of the second movie and the scene where after the Doctor’s visit, Albert is trapped on the bed and Harold uses the manikin to frighten him.

I do find the first film particularly depressing, but that comes from the fact that we get to share what should be a happy occasion for Harold, however we really see just how evil the old man can be. I always end up feeling terribly sad for Harold.

I don’t think the first film worked as well by taking the Steptoe’s of to Spain. They are much better at home in the grime and squalor of Oil Drum Lane. I think Ray and Alan recognised this point, ensuring the next movie was set back at home, (accepting that it did look different from the version on the telly).

I believe the “Ride Again” movie is the best ever adaptation of a TV comedy brought to the big screen. It also stands alone as a very funny film.
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Postby Rian » Sat Aug 11, 2007 12:25 pm

Yeah i toatally agree Bob
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THE STEPTOE MOVIES

Postby harold » Sun Mar 16, 2008 7:15 pm

I GOT THE MOVIES THE SECOND ONE IS THE BEST ONE
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Postby bob » Sun Mar 16, 2008 8:01 pm

Yeah Harold

The second movie is a real corker !!

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the steptoe movies

Postby harold » Sun Mar 16, 2008 9:24 pm

aw thanx bob
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Postby jimbo » Wed Mar 19, 2008 3:25 pm

yep the second film is better then the first.
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Postby Albie » Thu Mar 20, 2008 8:51 pm

I think they are both quality but muchos prefer the second one
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