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Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, The (1943)


I was going to say that he doesn't ride in on a white horse... but he basically does.
I was going to say that he doesn't ride in on a white horse... but he basically does.

Genre: War Drama Romance (UK)

Starring: Roger Livesey ('I Know Where I'm Going!'The Entertainer), Deborah Kerr (The InnocentsFrom Here to Eternity)

Directed By: Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger (Black NarcissusThe Red Shoes)

Overview: This is the story of Major General Clive Wynne-Candy, his life, friendships and exceptional military career, from the Boer War to the Second Great War.

The 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die List: if you know this site at all, you know I'm a slave to her. By the same token she's a wonderful mistress, a woman whom I love dearly. Though she may make me suffer from time to time, she does it with care and always in the name of personal progress and learning. Overall, she's a woman I trust my cinematic soul to, and someone whose film library I can tenderly enter... without need for explanation or any detail whatsoever. When her unknown offerings land in my lap, I receive them with genuine childlike excitement. Sometimes I open a wonderful surprising gift, sometimes it's a reeking White Elephant. Lately, her gifts have been well appreciated but without being fantastic, and Colonel Blimp is no exception.

The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp is the story of rigid old crow Brigadier General Clive Wynne-Candy. We open with a young Lieutenant engaging his troops in a war-game to take place at midnight. They decide to invade six hour earlier, to prove a point that war isn't played with honour-bound rules anymore, much to chubby Wynne-Candy Blimp's dismay. When he's call a stuffy old fat goat with a hoity moustache, we flash back to Colonel Blimp's early years in the service, what he did over the decades while he slowly packed on the pounds, how he came to such prominence in the service and even how he got to wearing a moustache.

Clive is a career soldier, a man who would never allow himself to be retired, a man who believes in the rules of honour and the honourable rules of war. We see his career unfold from Boer war to Great War. We see his duel with the enemy turn friendship and his friendship with a nurse turn love. In short, pretty much a big-budget wide-open set period nigh-costume drama with plenty of amusing little anecdotes and life lessons, and it did nothing for me - nothing more than educate me on how they were making War Dramas in England in 1943. In fact Colonel Blimp carried with it such a perfect bell-curve middle of the roadness that I have nothing shining nor tarnishing to say about it.

Nothing special at all.

Just filling space here...


Did I mention the ever-painted backdrops? I should have mentioned the ever-painted backdrops.
Did I mention the ever-painted backdrops? I should have mentioned the ever-painted backdrops.

Performance: 7 Cinematography: 8 Script: 7 Plot: 7 Mood: 6

Overall Rating: 70% (A Little Inflated)

Colonel Blimp was overall well received by the 1001 Club, and the theme of Edith Hunter, played by Deborah Kerr, as a recurring 'face' throughout the generations was nice but The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp smacked too much of costume melodrama to me, and that's a genre of film I just can't get into, and that's mainly because I have a penis.

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