Two Way Stretch
Two Way Stretch – 1960 | 87 mins | Comedy | B&W
Convicts Dodger Lane (Peter Sellers), Lennie Price (Bernard Cribbins) and Jelly Knight (David Lodge), aided and abetted by crooked clergyman Soapy Stevens (Wilfrid Hyde-White), escape from prison in a Black Mariah, pull off a diamond heist and nip back into the prison for the perfect alibi. The liberal governor (Maurice Denham) of Huntleigh directs a lax prison regime but crime didn’t pay in those days – and when authoritarian warder Sidney Crout (Lionel Jeffries) arrives from Rockhampton he is determined to make life behind bars uncomfortable for Dodger, Lennie and Jelly.
Robert Day’s fast-moving comedy is a worthy instalment into the annals of wonderful British black-and-white crime capers of the 1950s and 60s alongside The Lavender Hill Mob (1951), The League of Gentlemen (1960) and The Wrong Arm of the Law (1962). Peter Sellers performance is a joy as the wily Cockney convict and he’s ably supported by an excellent cast of familiar comedic actors, there are also delightful cameos from Irene Handl, Liz Fraser and Beryl Reid.