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Go To Blazes
Go To Blazes“When three charming but foolhardy
  smash-and-grab crooks raid a jeweller’s
  shop, a fire engine is inadvertently to
  blame for their thwarted get-away —
  giving them a bizarre idea for their next
  job in the 1962 film Go To Blazes

A JEWELLERY SHOP ROBBERY goes like clockwork, with the three crooks speeding through London in a getaway car tuned to do 125mph, until they are stopped in traffic to give priority to a fire engine.

On their way to a two-year stretch in prison, the three come up with an ingenious plan — when they get out, they will plan another smash-and-grab and use a fire engine as their getaway vehicle.

Go To Blazes from 1962 is one of the lost gems of British comedy and you can be sure that nothing will go according to plan for Bernard (Dave King: The Long Good Friday), the suited and bowler hat sporting Harry (Daniel Massey: Bad Timing) and Alfie (Norman Rossington: The Longest Day). First off, they have to find the vehicle and the money to buy it.

A visit to the Fire Engine Makers proves fruitless as the salesman (delightfully played by Miles Matheson) tells them that new fire engines cost 5,000 — a princely sum in the early Sixties — so the three dream up an elaborate plot to swap a wreck from a scrap dealer (Wilfred Lawson) for a useable fire engine, which has an explosive welcome in the hillside!

Disgraced fire chief Withers (Dennis Price) is on hand to train Harry, Bernard and Alfie, with hilarious results and the three friends are deemed ready to take their place in charge of their stolen fire engine. More hilarity...

With help from an old friend, Arson Eddie (the always wonderful Robert Morley), the plan comes together; but not before Harry has found a distraction in the arms of the lovely Chantal (the fabulous Maggie Smith: The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie), whom he meets when he becomes unnerved by the presence of a policeman close to the jeweller's shop he is about to rob.

Chantal and her friend Colette (Coral Browne) own an haute couture dress shop and it just could be that the building will play a part in giving Harry, Alfie and Bernard the break they've all been waiting for.

Things are destined to go wrong, but not before they are mistaken for real firemen and wreak havoc and mayhem. Will they end up back inside or will they finally pull off the heist of their dreams? These three will never give up. But they have to find a foolproof plan. And what is the one car in England that everybody stops for?

Go To Blazes is hugely amusing and appealing with the added interest of being filmed in the Swinging Sixties. Interesting to note that in one scene Cliff Richard's Sixties hit We Say Yeah is playing in the background — and Robert Morley (Arson Eddie in Go To Blazes) played Hamilton Black, the father of Nicky, the Mystery Singer (Cliff Richard) in The Young Ones.

The film also features: the great Arthur Lowe as a Prison Warder; the superb John Le Mesurier in a cameo role as The Fisherman; the terrific Derek Nimmo as Fish Fancier; David Lodge as Sergeant; John Welsh as Chief Fire Officer; Finlay Currie as Judge; James Hayter as Pipe Smoker; John Glyn-Jones as Fire Chief; Eynon Evans as Mayer; Diane Clare as Girl; and Dudley Button as Boy. The redoubtable Thora Hird and Will Hay also put in an appearance.

Original Story and Adaptation by Peer Myers and Ronald Cass; Screenplay by Patrick Campbell and Vivienne Knight; Director of Photography is Erwin Hillier, BSC; Music Composed and Conducted by John Addison; Produced by Kenneth Harper and Directed by Michael Truman.

Go To Blazes will be released for the first time on DVD on 30 January, 2012. Certificate: U | Feature Running Time: 80 Minutes Approximately | Catalogue Number: OPTD1229 | RRP: 15.99.

To celebrate its 50th Anniversary, the film will screen at the British Film Institute in the London Comedy Film Festival on January 29, the day before its first-ever release on DVD.

"Go To Blazes is a hugely amusing and appealing Sixties crook caper" — Maggie Woods, MotorBar