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The Great McGonagall (1975)

William Topaz McGonagall, the world's greateset poet. Unfortunately the whole of the rest of the world disagreed. His talent made him a sort of Victorian Chris Evans but without the cash.

Director:

Joseph McGrath
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Cast

Credited cast:
Spike Milligan ... William McGonagall
Peter Sellers ... Queen Victoria
Julia Foster ... Mrs. McGonagall
John Bluthal ... Mr. Giles / MacDuff / Hercules Paint / British Soldier / Policeman / McLain / Sheriff / Judge
Victor Spinetti ... Mr. Stewart / Second-Lieutenant Rotlo / Supposed John Brown / Gentleman / Revolutionary / Cardinal / Policeman
Valentine Dyall ... Army Sergeant / Lord Tennyson / Doctor / Native Messenger / Policeman / Fop
Julian Chagrin ... Prince Albert / Rev. Gilfillan / Publican / Balmoral Policeman / Stagehand / Ruffian / Mr Stewart's Assistant / British Soldier / Fop
Clifton Jones ... King Theebaw / Policeman / Clerk of the Court / Mr Stewart's Assistant / Zulu Chief / Ruffian / Fop
Charlie Young Atom Charlie Young Atom ... Postman / Policeman / Sleeper in the Snow / Theatre Announcer / Drinker (as Charlie Atom)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Luie Caballero Luie Caballero ... Man with parrot
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Storyline

The tale of an unemployed Scotsman, William McGonagall whose ambition was to become England's Poet Laureate. One minor drawback is that his poetry is terrible. Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Biography | Comedy

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 June 1978 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

El gran McGonagall See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

William Topaz McGonagall was, in fact, a real poet. He is considered the worst poet ever, and Spike Milligan and Peter Sellers read his poems to one another frequently. See more »

Quotes

William McGonagall: But for my age I too would have joined your army.
Queen Victoria: Oh come now, Mr McGonagall. You're only 45.
William McGonagall: Aye, that's my age but I do not...
Queen Victoria: Oh come now, join up. Join up and travel to distant and exotic places. Meet interesting and exciting people, and then kill them.
See more »

Soundtracks

O Tannenbaum
(uncredited)
Traditional tune, lyrics by Ernst Anschütz
See more »

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User Reviews

Well... it does have Peter Sellers.
16 May 2004 | by dlgartSee all my reviews

Interesting in an history of British comedy sense. It has a Goon Show cast does Monty Python skit feel. Unfortunately, it takes a concept that would have been appropriate for a five minute skit and stretches it out an additional hour and a half. A fine supporting performance by Peter Sellers and sporadic gratuitous female nudity (while appreciated) are insufficient to save this from being an albeit quirky and unique but simultaneously mediocre and repetitive low budget comedy.

As an aside, the video copy of this film that I purchased features a full cover picture of Peter Sellers and in the short synopsis on the reverse states that Sellers stars as The Great McGonagall. For the benefit of those of you who have yet to see the film, this is entirely incorrect. Peter Sellers plays the relatively small roll of Queen Victoria and Spike Milligan stars as McGonagall.


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