The Bulldog Breed (1960) Norman Wisdom, Ian Hunter, David Lodge, Robert Urquhart - movie review on The Movie Scene

The Bulldog Breed (1960)   3/53/53/53/53/5


Johnny Briggs and Norman Wisdom in The Bulldog Breed (1960)

Wisdom of the Navy

After having his romantic advances crushed by the picture house ticket girl, grocery delivery boy Norman attempts to take his own life but typically is inept at doing that. Just as he contemplates jumping off a cliff he is convinced to join the Navy as he will not only travel but get all the girls he wanted. Unfortunately Norman is not use to the life of discipline aboard a Navy vessel and soon finds himself in trouble. But he also finds himself selected to pilot an experimental rocket as it is meant to be idiot proof.

One of the most accurate things I read about Norman Wisdom and his brand of chaos comedy was that whilst it is hard not to like the innocent humour of Norman he is an acquired taste. It is something which I have realised in every one of his movies which I have watched as whilst I always start loving the impish charm and slapstick of Norman there always comes a point where it begins to get too samey and I need something else to split it up. It is unsurprisingly the issue I have with "The Bulldog Breed" as once again the movie is understandably little more than a vehicle for Norman Wisdom's comedic talents but a lot of the humour feels like you saw him do the same gag in the previous movie. As such when he boards the ship it isn't a surprise when he trips or is jokey with a commander rather than standing to order. As such whilst we have this storyline about Norman being picked to man a rocket it is all about the charm and comedy of Norman.

What though does give "The Bulldog Breed" is a bit of an extra edge when watched now is spotting the various familiar British actors in supporting roles. As such there is John Le Mesurier, Frank Williams, Sheila Hancock, Oliver Reed, Johnny Briggs, Michael Caine and even William Roach all of whom make you double take when you spot them in these supporting roles.

What this all boils down to is that "The Bulldog Breed" will certainly be a lot of fun for Norman Wisdom fans but equally having the same issues which all of his movies had which is too end up being samey due to the familiarity of the humour with the usual selection of comedy trips and gurns on display.


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