TV Cream

Films: A is for...

Adding Machine, The

This is hardly the epitome of Swinging Britain, based as it is on a play from 1923. Carnaby Street military jacket purchasers needn’t worry, though. They updated it – to the thirties. Milo O’Shea is Zero, a put-upon accountant in a big, grey company who trudges between tedious days adding figures with Billie Whitelaw and lonely nights lusting after call-girl Carol Cleveland while under the thumb of waspish wife Phyllis Diller. Learning he’s to be replaced by a computer, he goes berserk, kills his boss, is arrested and executed, and arrives in a fairground-like heaven, only to be told he’s got to go back to Earth and start adding away once more. Big Things about the Human Condition are assumed said. The film opens and closes in short order.

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