The Punch and Judy Man
is a British comedy film
directed by Jeremy Summers
. It was Tony Hancock
's second film in a starring role, following The Rebel
Based on Hancock's childhood memories of Bournemouth
, the film is set in the early 1950s in the sleepy fictional seaside town of Piltdown. Hancock plays Wally Pinner, the unhappily married Punch and Judy
Man. Wally and the other beach entertainers, the Sandman (John Le Mesurier
) who makes sand sculptures, and Neville the photographer (Mario Fabrizi
) are socially unacceptable to the town's snobbish elite.
Wally's wife, Delia (Sylvia Syms
), runs an antique shop below their flat, and is socially ambitious. To achieve this she needs to have Wally invited to entertain at the official reception for Lady Jane Caterham (Barbara Murray
), who is to switch on the town's illuminations, and at the Mayoress' suggestion the Reception Committee invites Wally to entertain.
ceremony ends in farce when Wally's electric shaver
shorts out some of the lights, causing some of the illuminated signs to display unflattering comments about the town. The dinner degenerates into a food fight
when one of the drunken guests heckles Punch, and when Lady Jane rounds on Wally, Delia floors her with a punch. Her dreams of social acceptance are gone, but Wally and Delia retire, wiser and closer.
The town of Piltdown is apparently named after Piltdown Man
The film is a gentle but bitter-sweet comedy, and... Read More