Make Mine a Million1959
Make Mine a Million is a 1959 British comedy film directed by Lance Comfort, starring Arthur Askey, Sid James, and Bernard Cribbins. The film parodies the stuffiness of the 1950s BBC and the effect of television advertising in the era.
It was shot at Shepperton Studios near London with sets designed by the art director Denis Wreford. The film was distributed by British Lion.
Arthur Ashton (in a parody of himself, Arthur Askey) is a makeup man working for National Television (a parody of the BBC). During a visit to the local launderette, he meets Sid Gibson (Sid James), a shady pedlar who is trying to flog Bonko, a brand of washing powder in the shape of a pill. The man cannot afford to advertise on TV, but wishes to do so. The fairly clueless Arthur agrees to help him, and they manage to plug an advert for Bonko on National Television by interrupting the live feed.
This causes quite a stir amongst the national television heads, who have Arthur fired. However, the advert proves extremely popular and demand for the product soars.
After repeating the stunt at Ascot Races, Sid, realising that this is potentially a huge moneymaker, does a deal with an advertising executive and, with Arthur's help, they plug cake mix at the Edinburgh Tattoo. Next Arthur materialises on stage during a production of Swan Lake.
After a narrow escape, Arthur wants to quit, but Sid persuades him to do one final job—interrupting a press conference between the British Prime Minister and the American President. On the way, the Post Office van they are using is hijacked by criminals. Arthur, who is in the back of the van, contacts the police using his broadcast system, to thwart the robbery, leading to the final barnyard showdown. In the end, Arthur, now a hero and celebrity, gets his own TV show, brokered by Sid, of course.
The Radio Times Guide to Films gives the film three stars out of five, describing it as a "pacey romp".
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