Randy and dandy highwayman Dick Turpin terrorises the countryside around Upper Dencher with Bow Street Runners Captain Fancey and Sergeant Jock Strapp hot on his heels.
For true fans of the franchise, this is the last real Carry On flick as it is the final film to feature series legends Sid James (who died in 1976), Barbara Windsor and Hattie Jacques and also the last one to be scripted by Talbot Rothwell, who provided the series’ unique mixture of risqué charm and wit. Mining the bawdy historical atmosphere, Rothwell delivers a feel good romp that if not classic Carry On is enjoyable middle order stuff.
After a slow start, Rothwell’s script throws in some choice innuendo (“All this talk of Big Dick. I've had enough of it!”) and gives every one of the regulars a chance to shine. In the dual role of Turpin and Reverend Flasher, James has lots of opportunity to give off his trademark throaty cackle and has some good chemistry with Windsor as a member of his highway gang Williams and Douglas (in his first major dialogue role) do nice variations on the characters Williams and Peter Butterworth did in …..Don’t Lose Your Head. Peter Butterworth gets some great comedy business as, dressed up in drag, he tries not to ogle Joan Sims’ bosoms. Even some of the smaller cameos register: Hattie Jacques as a nosey housekeeper listening at the door, Kenneth Connor as an ageing copper more interested in totty than Turpin. As a “historical” Carry On it is perhaps better than Henry, not as good as Cleo and has a sheen of poignancy around it as the last time this Brit Institution would work together in their most famous line up.
Feels like a swansong and, sadly, was just that for Sid James, whose warmth is the best thing in this average romp.