Hattie Jacques, Kenneth Williams and Sid James in Carry on Doctor (1967)

The Carry on Gang Play Doctors and Nurses

When preacher/ healer Francis Bigger (Frankie Howerd) takes a tumble he finds himself taken to hospital and what a hospital it is with patients with sympathetic pregnancies, another who keeps wandering to the women's ward and a battle axe of a matron (Hattie Jacques) keeping an eye over everyone. But all is not well at the hospital when Dr. Tinkle (Kenneth Williams) gets himself caught in a compromising position with a young nurse by Dr. Kilmore (Jim Dale), and so conspires with Matron to make sure the popular Dr. Kilmore doesn't blab much to the annoyance of all the patients.

"Carry on Doctor" is not one of the better "Carry On" movies but it is one of my favourites because it features all the "Carry On" cast such as Sid James, Barbara Windsor, Jim Dale, Kenneth Williams, Charles Hawtrey and the wonderful Hattie Jacques as a belt and britches hospital matron. It also features that risque comedy which the "Carry On" movies were the master of delivering with innuendo fuelled gags about sexy nurses, medical operations on the never regions and basically any slightly sexual joke you could get away with back in the late 60s. Plus visually "Carry on Doctor" is full of wonderful slapstick especially Jim Dale's roof top tom foolery which is a great scene.

Hattie Jacques and Jim Dale in Carry on Doctor (1967)

So as is often the case "Carry on Doctor" does have a storyline but it really is the least important of things. What we get are a couple of stories starting with inspirational talker Francis Bigger being admitted to hospital for a back problem but confusion leads to him thinking he is dying. And then there is the storyline surrounding Dr. Kilmore getting in trouble over supposedly being caught spying on a semi dressed nurse. But as I said the storyline to "Carry on Doctor" really is inconsequential or at least until the closing scenes as the whole movie is about the characters, their individual ailments and the humour which goes along with them.

As such "Carry on Doctor" is full of these individual cases from Charles Hawtrey as Mr. Barron a husband in hospital because he is having a sympathetic pregnancy through to Bernard Bresslaw who as Ken Biddle keeps on getting in trouble with the Sister for fraternising with a female patient. And of course with various other "Carry On" stalwarts we get little stories about Sid James as Charlie Roper who keeps faking illness and the romantic feelings between Nurse Clarke and Dr. Kilmore. And as you would expect all of these individual cases are full of humour from Charlie Roper dipping his thermometer in his tea to fake a high temperature through to Ken's constant bumping into both Sister and Matron on his regular excursions across the corridor to the women's ward. Plus there is the sexual innuendo which whilst still there is by no means as full on as later "Carry On" movies.

As for the acting well there is nothing wrong with any of it. Jim Dale is perfectly cast as the nice Dr. Jim Kilmore as is Anita Harris as Nurse Clarke. And all those regulars deliver the level of acting and fun you expect so you get Sid James with his dirty cackle as Barbara Windsor walks by in a tight top and Kenneth Williams playing it slightly stuck up. But for me it is Hattie Jacques which makes "Carry on Doctor" so much fun as she is perfect as the old school matron who takes no fools but hilarious in her affections towards Kenneth Williams as Dr. Tinkle. As for Frankie Howard who as a sort of guest in this "Carry On" movie, well he's amusing and does his best but the jokes he gets end up being repetitive especially the one surrounding him talking to his hard of hearing friend ChloŽ Gibson played by Joan Sims.

What this all boils down to is that "Carry on Doctor" is by no means the best of the "Carry On" movies but with many of the stalwarts appearing and a good grip on the sexual innuendo it is one of my favourites. And much of it is down to Hattie Jacques who is just brilliant as the Matron.

Tags: Carry On Movies