Catch Us If You Can

1965

Action / Comedy / Music

0
IMDb Rating 5.8 10 614

Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
May 08, 2021 at 10:37 PM

Director

Cast

Ronald Lacey as Yeano
Clive Swift as Duffie
Sheila Fearn as Shirley
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
839.71 MB
1268*720
English 2.0
NR
24 fps
1 hr 31 min
P/S 3 / 1
1.52 GB
1888*1072
English 2.0
NR
24 fps
1 hr 31 min
P/S 1 / 6

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by eisor88 10 / 10

Criminally under-rated

I'd heard a lot about this film before I ever had the chance to see it. I was predisposed to be dismissive.

However, when I finally DID see it, I was taken quite aback.

The director, John Boorman, is very negative about this film in his recent autobiography. I must disagree. There is a lazy school of thought that sees this movie as a straight rip-off of "A Hard Day's Night". Again, I dissent.

When I sat down to watch this film I expected something approximating to the stock descriptions: derivative, formulaic, just going through the motions.

I was quite unprepared for the reality of "Catch Us If You Can", which is a far more challenging and rule-breaking movie than its reputation would suggest. (I can only suppose that some people see what they expect to see.)

It surprised me that a vehicle for a pop band should be so downbeat and thought-provoking. Another IMDb reviewer rightly drew attention to the wintriness of this film.

There are two vital encounters in the film, once Steve (Dave Clark) and Dinah (Barbara Ferris) have fled from the TV commercial they are meant to be filming. The first is with a collection of hippie-esque drop-outs hiding out in rural ruins, the second with a middle-aged couple in a large townhouse in the affluent spa-town of Bath.

Their moves are monitored at a remove by a sinister advertising man, Leon Zissell, who seems to have a Svengali-like preoccupation with Dinah. To this end he dispatches two henchmen to pursue the errant couple. The elder of the two (not THAT old, as somebody remarks - probably in his mid-30s) is loyal, but at a fancy dress party in Bath his younger colleague readily succumbs to the charms of a pretty young lady.

I could try to encapsulate the plot of this film, but what matters far more is its atmosphere. Steve and Dinah are travelling (initially in a stolen E-Type Jag) towards an island off England's Devon coast that Dinah - young and successful - is contemplating buying. (This island conceit must be a straight lift from "La Dolce Vita", where the actress Marcello Mastroianni's character is "servicing", dreams of buying just such an island.)

The soundtrack is surpisingly strong. There are some straightforward songs from the Dave Clark Five, but otherwise they strive to provide something less stamped with the band style.

Like one of the other IMDb reviewers, I would have to agree, having seen this film, that it is actually stronger, viewed simply as a film, than "A Hard Day's Night". (Where it obviously falls down is the fact that its soundtrack - excellent as it actually is - is NOT by The Beatles.)

Don't patronise this movie, or damn it with faint praise. Don't condemn it for not being what it isn't (a Beatles film), but rejoice in the boldness of its departure from the Cliff-Beatles formula.

The scene in Bath with Robin Bailey and Yootha Joyce is worth the price of admission alone!

Reviewed by JekyllBoote-1 10 / 10

"It was only a dream!"

Recently I bought the DVD of "A Hard Day's Night", and spent a whole weekend watching and re-watching it. You might gather from this that I love the movie, as indeed I do, so what I'm going to say now may very well shock you: "Catch Us If You Can" is a better movie. Of course it wouldn't exist without the pioneering example of "A Hard Day's Night", which changed youth/pop movies for ever, but it really is a better movie.

I'm always inclined to see it as the final instalment of an early- to mid-60s trilogy of movies that began with Ken Russell's "French Dressing", and continued with Michael Winner's "The System". (I'm tempted to extend this to a tetralogy, with Richard Lester's "The Knack" as the last instalment. But, unlike the other movies, "The Knack" was a critical and commercial success - Palme D'Or at Cannes, and all that.) There's a continuity of mood, if not theme, between these movies, a strange mixture of exhilaration and wistfulness. The "phoney" 60s, a sort of hangover of the late 50s, lasted in Britain until about 1962 (although there were intimations of what was to come in Anthony Newley's "The Strange World of Gurney Slade"), but the Satire Boom, followed quickly by the Beatles, ushered in the real 1960s.

"Catch Us If You Can" takes a number of audacious risks from the very start: the Dave Clark Five are not a pop group playing themselves, but a team of stuntmen working on a series of TV commercials; their songs are performed off-screen as the soundtrack to the on-screen action; the movie insists strongly on the wintry season in which it was filmed: the frozen milk, the unbearably cold conditions of the meat warehouse, the orange growing safely inside the glass conservatory, the snowy countryside.

There is little of the lightness of mood of "A Hard Day's Night". "Catch Us If You Can", like its saturnine hero, Steve (Dave Clark), is strangely downbeat and melancholy. Not even the kittenish Dinah (Barbara Ferris) is capable of raising Steve's mood of dejection for very long. Absconding from the commercial they are filming, Steve and Dinah make an erratic Pilgrim's Progress across the West Country en route to an island, off the coast of Devon, that Dinah is contemplating buying. On the way they meet a group of proto-hippies (the term would not be in widespread use until the middle of 1966) squatting in abandoned buildings on Salisbury Plain, and a bickering middle-aged couple living in the opulent surroundings of Bath's Royal Crescent. In a sense, all of these people are in flight from the modern world.

The ultimate source of Steve's dejection is Leon Zissell, the svengali-like advertising executive, who is quite evidently besotted with Dinah. Zissell casts his shadow wherever the absconding couple might find themselves.

Guy and Nan, the bickering middle-aged couple, seem somewhat sinister at first, but they show themselves to be essentially good-hearted. Both are collectors, and we initially assume that Steve and Dinah are to be added to their collections. Actually, Nan collects old clothes, while Guy collects old phonograph recordings, photographs, etc., ("The pop art of yesteryear"). Anyone viewing "Catch Us If You Can" nearly forty years on will see how it has now been added to Guy's collection itself, a clever and telling touch. (Touching, too.)

The Austin Powers movies, funny and clever as they often are, have seriously distorted younger people's perceptions of the 1960s. Amidst all the "grooviness" there was always a quieter, more reflective aspect to the 60s (e.g. "Blow-Up"), and "Catch Us If You Can" captures this. Clear your mind of preconceptions: this movie is NOT a failed attempt at re-making "A Hard Day's Night", but a brilliantly successful attempt to make something quite different - a thoughtful, grown-up film that stands the test of time.

Reviewed by enochsneed 9 / 10

Watch it if you can

This is certainly a different type of 'pop' musical film. It features one of the hottest groups of the day (seven top ten hits in the US) but takes a jaded and disillusioned view of the concept of 'youth culture'.

When Dinah and Steve break 'free' (nothing in this movie is what it appears to be) they encounter early hippies who have rejected society and its crass materialism for life on the road but seem to have found nothing but a kind of aimless boredom spiced with drug use. (I was very surprised to hear mention of heroin in 1965.) Their chosen guru is so spaced out he can hardly think straight (and we never hear the end of his rambling tale about a dead cat or discover if it has any point).

Their next encounter is with "an old married couple". This phrase normally signals contentment and affection. The film's couple is riven by jealousy, sexual predation and rejection of the present for an idealised past.

Finally meeting Louis, an old childhood friend and mentor of Steve's, they find him running a fake 'Western ranch' holiday resort in the Devon countryside. Steve angrily dismisses him and his dreams as shabby fakery.

As you can see, this is far from 'A Hard Day's Night' (in fact the film's titles both imitate and parody the scene of The Beatles running around a playing field).

Despite some negative comments here I think this film is well worth watching more than once to catch all the strands running through it. As actors the Dave Clark Five have - probably thankfully - little to do but be chirpy and quirky. Dave Clark himself rather overdoes the moody saturnine bit - that's best left to the real James Deans of this world.

The performance to watch is David de Keyser's Leon. He is a cynic who is painfully aware of his own cynicism, a man who realises the shallowness of the world he works in and the vulgarity of those he has to work with. He also harbours a genuine affection for Dinah which he can't express. He is protective in a way, but exploitative at the same time. He also envies Dinah's youth and spontaneous nature. When he says "maybe" he will join her on her next escapade, we know he won't and never could. It is a subtle and rather moving piece of acting.

Leon seems jealous of Steve's relationship with Dinah but, another of the films contradictions, there is no relationship. Steve is merely helping Dinah to reach her island. He is impatient with her shallowness and the way she seems willing to be distracted by people he sees as frauds (the hippies, Louis's ranch). The only time they kiss is when Dinah kisses Steve for the press cameras - just before he turns his back on her for the last time.

One of the film's other strengths is the photography, capturing the urban landscape of London's flashy new office blocks and the bleak winter countryside and adding much to the film's atmosphere.

This is a minor film - but compelling.

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