TV Cream

Films: B is for...

Best of Benny Hill, The

A cinematic rehash, no less, of the mushroom gatherer’s toppermost sketches and songs up to 1974, so don’t expect the likes of the skeletal striptease, but you do get Henry Magee interviewing Benny’s French film director (Pierre da Terre and his masterpieces Lavabo en Face, Jambon Triste, La Poof Celebre), and plenty of Bob Todd in a dress. Oddly enough, considering Hill’s star status, this isn’t, as with And Now For Something Completely Different, an assortment of sketches from TV reshot in proper Eastmancolour, but for the most part a grainy, muddy transfer of the originals from hi-band videotape, so it’s surprising this gets an airing anytime. All the regulars are present and correct, plus Nicholas Parsons and Dave Prowse.



  1. Lee James Turnock

    May 21, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    Dear dear, TVCream, you’re getting your Pythons and your Hills mixed up. Michael Palin was ‘le pouf celebre’, Brian Zatapathique, in the flying sheep sketch from Python series one. Pierre da Terre’s film was ‘Ne Touche Pas Le Pouf’, which was handily translated by my French teacher at the time as “don’t touch the flea”.

  2. Richard Davies

    October 2, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    I remember this turning up on Channel 4 a few years ago, & noted the picture quality was even worse than the ropey print of Santa Claus: The Movie the BBC seem to use for years.

  3. Paul Bovey

    December 4, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    I think this is getting a DVD re-release next year with a new transfer from the original film elements. It’ll be interesting to see what the quality’s like.

    “I would like mussel soup!”

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