Heavens Above! DVD


In 'Heavens Above' a socialist parson is sent into an upper-class area where he sets about converting the wealthy...

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05 February 2007
Optimum Home Entertainment 
113 minutes 
Anamorphic, PAL 
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When a well-intentioned vicar (Peter Sellers) is appointed to a snobbish parish by mistake, all his good efforts cause chaos with the local gentry and villagers alike.

British cinema in the late 1950s and early 1960s turned out a series of gently satirical films which mocked established institutions, and Heavens Above is the member of that group that turned its attention to religion. Peter Sellers, in an unusually low-key performance that's all the better for being underplayed, stars as a young vicar whose tendencies to interpret Christian doctrines in his own individualistic way, rather than conform to church traditions, leads to all kinds of chaos. He really believes, for example, in taking from the rich to give the poor. It's a quietly funny film rather than a festival of belly laughs, but the points it scores against religious hypocrisies are deftly and persuasively made, and it's one of those British comedies where squadrons of lovely character actors fill out the minor roles. Any fan of vintage British comedy will find a cast including Irene Handl, Eric Sykes, Miriam Karlin, Ian Carmichael, Cecil Parker and Roy Kinnear hard to resist, and there are also very brief appearances from Derek Nimmo and Rodney Bewes at the beginning of their careers