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Friday, 19 December 2014
HEY, JACK - WHO'S ON FIRST? THAT'LL BE ABBOTT & COSTELLO...
I first saw this particular movie back in 1967 - and again in '68
& '69. I don't know if I ever saw it from start to finish at one sitting,
but if not, I probably saw the complete movie over the course of those
three yearly broadcasts. I remember coming in after playing at THOR
(with my home-made hammer) in the field across the road from my
house on one occasion and it had already started (this was probably
in '68) and, remembering that I'd enjoyed it the year before, sat
down in front of the telly and watched it again.
As you can see, the movie was JACK & The BEANSTALK,
starring ABBOTT & COSTELLO (who, at that time, I didn't know
were an iconic double act from years before), and the duo themselves
described it as "one for the kids". It wasn't until it was shown again in
1989 (the BBC then having just recently re-acquired the rights to show
it again after 20 years) that I discovered it was shot in 'sepia' and
colour, just like The WIZARD Of OZ.
One day, around Christmas of 1970/'71 (I've a feeling it was
Boxing day), I saw the title advertised in the TV listings for that
evening, and made a point of rushing home from the town centre
(where I'd bought a Santa in a sleigh being pulled by reindeer from a
flower shop), only to discover it was the HANNA-BARBERA version
with GENE KELLY. I watched it anyway, but was disappointed that
it wasn't the one I'd expected. As I said, I had to wait until 1989
to see the A&C film again, and I now have it on DVD.
The movie is strictly a 'B' feature I suppose, but is inextricably
linked to my childhood and therefore regarded by myself in a some-
what rose-coloured hue. It does have some funny moments 'though,
and is an entertaining enough little movie, so give it look-see if it ever
comes on the telly again. No great insight or behind-the-scenes info
to offer with this post, I'm afraid - it's just a shameless, self-