Thieves try to steal contraceptive pills from a maternity hospital. Fourth and last of the medical-themed Carry On flicks, this is a very straightforward farce with every pregnancy gag in the book ticked off, and with crossdressing opportunities cheerfully embraced.
Archaeologists stay on a caravan site while completing their dig. Late series entry and part of the holiday cycle of 70s Carry Ons, riffing on 1969’s Carry On Camping. Familiar ingredients and jokes are reused: by now the formula is worn thin, though a couple of strong gags sneak by the slapstick and leering.
An unmarried couple runs a computer dating agency: complications ensue. Sketch-based sex farce, somewhat coarser than the series to date, trying to balance Carry On ingredients and archetypes with broader material. Patchy at best, though the commitment to the single entendre is almost impressive.
A faith healer is admitted into hospital. The second medical Carry On (after Nurse, but before Again Doctor and Matron) is a broad farce well-played by a seasoned cast of series regulars and UK TV character actors. A guesting Frankie Howerd offers a little extra too.
A battle of the sexes ensues when an all-female taxi competitor takes on a complacent all-male company. Dated in premise and some attitudes, this is nevertheless a superior series entry, and about the best of the first – workplace – cycle of Carry Ons. There’s remarkable economy of film-making on display, the joke-per-minute ratio is high, and there’s plenty of fine physical acting.
Assorted Brits book onto a package break to the resort of Elsbels. Single entendre-tastic and somewhat shopworn series entry, focused – like others of its time – on holidaying to set up character arcs, innuendo and basic gags. Almost a subversion of the disaster genre: Peter Butterworth is on fine form here.
British rule in 1895 India is threatened when an embarrassing military secret leaks. Despite awkwardness (blackface used for repertory cast villains) this is the high-point of the Carry Ons, a sharp satire drawing on Kipling and siege actioners like Zulu. Still works as a comedy and as an acute portrait of the arrogance of the English, the class system, and of Empire. Of, er, ‘its time’, but recommended nevertheless.
A missing person case leads a detective to a mysterious house and its alluring resident. Generally effective and accurate parody of Hammer’s gothic adaptations (touching on Frankenstein, Dracula, Sherlock Holmes, Jekyll/Hyde and Mummy pics), with wax museum antics thrown in. Guesting stars Harry H Corbett and Fenella Fielding add some variety too.
A toilet factory is troubled by poor sales and industrial action. No lavatorial joke opportunity goes unpunished in this sitcom-ish patchy series entry (the 22nd), the series’ first underperformer at the box office (it makes the mistake of punching down). Of its time, to put it mildly. A couple of genius moments shine through, though the film has principal value as a social document and for exploring ideas (and locations) reused in Carry On Girls a couple of years later.
A struggling seaside resort – Fircombe – hosts a beauty contest to attract visitors. Tatty late series entry, from the third – holiday-based – cycle of Carry On flicks. Either harmless picture postcard fun or a relic from a bygone age: a stagey sex farce that’s fascinating if not that funny.