Freeview film of the day: A Fish Called Wanda

The classic John Cleese caper comedy also stars Michael Palin, Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Kline and harks back to Ealing's finest hour


A Fish Called Wanda  ★★★★★


9.00-11.20pm Sony Movie Channel

This is an eccentric, quintessentially British farce, and a blissful blend of verbal and physical comedy, directed by 78-year-old Charles Crichton and co-written by John Cleese. The plot concerns a gang of diamond thieves – two Brits, stammering, fish-loving Michael Palin and the boss Tom Georgeson, and two Yanks, Jamie Lee Curtis and Kevin Kline – who pull off a lucrative heist in London and then set about double-crossing each other. Eventually only Georgeson knows where the diamonds are but the ruthless Curtis has grassed on him and he’s arrested. So she seduces Georgeson’s barrister, John Cleese, hoping he’ll persuade his client to reveal the loot’s whereabouts. And unhappily married Cleese is only too happy to go along with her. This is a joyous, fast-moving romp packed with hilarious set pieces and beautifully acted by a fine ensemble cast.


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