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Doing Time (1979)

Porridge (original title)
This prison comedy is based on the popular British television series of the same name. Long time Slade prison inmate Fletcher is ordered by Grouty to arrange a football match between the ... See full summary »

Director:

Dick Clement
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronnie Barker ... Fletcher
Richard Beckinsale ... Lennie
Fulton Mackay ... Mackay
Brian Wilde ... Barrowclough
Peter Vaughan ... Harry Grout
Julian Holloway ... Bainbridge
Geoffrey Bayldon ... Governor
Christopher Godwin Christopher Godwin ... Beal
Barrie Rutter ... Oakes
Daniel Peacock Daniel Peacock ... Rudge
Sam Kelly ... Warren
Ken Jones Ken Jones ... Ives
Philip Locke ... Banyard
Gorden Kaye ... Dines (as Gordon Kaye)
Oliver Smith ... McMillan
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Storyline

This prison comedy is based on the popular British television series of the same name. Long time Slade prison inmate Fletcher is ordered by Grouty to arrange a football match between the prisoners and an all-star celebrity team. Fletcher is unaware that the match is only a diversion so that an escape can take place. When Fletcher and his cell mate Lennie stumble on the escape, they are taken along, and find themselves having to break back into prison to avoid getting into trouble. Written by measham

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Fletcher's inside story - even funnier as a film. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 August 1979 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Doing Time See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tony Osoba had enjoyed his time in the TV series so was desperate to appear in the film in some capacity despite being involved in the filming of a television show during production of this film. He was finally able to wangle a couple of days off the television show and managed to play his character of 'McLaren' for two days of filming. As this was relatively short notice for the film makers they weren't able to incorporate him in the main story in time but they did include him as one the players in the football match and in the dressing room prior to the kick-off. See more »

Goofs

Godber declares that the model aircraft he's constructing is a Spitfire, but it's clearly a P51 Mustang. See more »

Quotes

Banyard: I don't know why you kowtow to that man, Grout.
Fletcher: I know you don't, Mr Banyard. That's why your nose looks like it does.
See more »

Connections

Spin-off Porridge (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Scotland the Brave
(uncredited)
Traditional tune, with parody lyrics
Sung by Ronnie Barker
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Darker Nooks and Crannies of Slade and the Soul...
15 December 2007 | by velvoofellSee all my reviews

Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais seized the opportunity the 1970s genre of British sitcom movies offered. they took it, few other scriptwriters did. This was, namely, the chance to do on the silver screen what they could not do on prime-time BBC.

Lovable caricatures are subtly toned down here - Fletcher begins with the persona from the sitcom then changes. The quipping, upbeat Fletcher is revealed as a mask for the born loser/survivor he truly is.

The opening scenes where new character 'Grudge', a new, young inmate, is booked in and led around by the wardens could easily have been taken from John McKenzie's 'A Sense of Freedom'. Mckay, too, is deftly rendered a touch more three-dimensional. His mantra bemoaning the inmates' status as lower than normal people betrays his true feelings.

Peter Vaughan's Kray-like 'Grout' again all but turns to the camera and says "That's a cartoon version of me on the telly - I'm really a nasty piece of work'. The film very subtly does that which recent Brit comedy-turned-movie 'The League of Gentlemen's Apocalypse' deliberately attempted - the creation of real-world versions, far less comfortable versions, of the stalwart caricatures of the TV show's pantheon.


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