Clockwise - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Clockwise Reviews

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March 23, 2016
As a Monty Python lover I may be less than objective when it comes to reviewing work by John Cleese. Be that as it may, I have never seen a better crafted comic movie that this. In my opinion Clockwise really is the most sublime comic movie ever created. The characters are all totally believable. UK schools, class consciousness in England during the 1980s, clever interplay between the story lines.... it is sublime. Although I loved Monty Python and I rolled over laughing at Fawlty Towers and Life of Brian, none of them match Clockwise for sheer entertainment. It is intelligent comedy, not slapstick. There are no super witty punch lines or banana skins. Obviously having said this, it earns a 10 from me.
½ October 30, 2015
Carried by John Cleese, but funny "almost road trip" movie. Watch during a slow day.
½ June 5, 2015
Unfortunately overlooked.
October 12, 2014
What this all boils downs to is that "Clockwise" is simply for those who are fans of John Cleese because it is all about him and the sort of character he plays so well. But if you can only cope with Cleese in small doses it is hard work.
January 15, 2014
A "Time Maniac" like Mr. Brian Stimpson has a the worst day of his life when all his planning gets wrong. A smart British comedy with a great performance of John Cleese
January 6, 2014
If you like John Cleese and very British movies, than this is the flick for you. I happen to be a Pythonite(no idea if that's a real thing) and I love Cleese. So I laughed quite a bit. Makes me wish there were more scenes at the school because Cleese is hilarious with kids and teenagers.
April 18, 2013
John Cleese and the fantastic cast romp through this comedy classic, as one drama follows another, all due to the head teachers ocd behavior for time keeping that causes the whole thing to lead to mayhem.
Super Reviewer
April 13, 2013
Hardcore Monty Python fans may be disappointed with this lightweight John Cleese vehicle, but it's an enjoyable, if unambitious, farce. Cleese draws on his Python history to play Brian Stimpson, a punctilious headmaster with a constant eye on the clock and his students. He's not the ferocious military caricature you might expect, however -- he has a sense of humor and warmth beneath his steely exterior. His students fear him, but also they also like and respect him.

Stimpson is thrilled to get an invitation to helm a prestigious headmaster conference, and takes a day off to travel to the event. Alas, he makes an uncharacteristic mistake and gets on the wrong train. Determined not to be late, he scrambles for other travel options. This sets in motion a series of screwball mishaps involving police pursuit, a monastery, misguided "shortcuts" and other tomfoolery. Funny enough but, unfortunately, Cleese's main comic foil is a teen student played by a shy, novice actress with little skill and a wedge-like hairstyle that badly dates the film.
January 18, 2013
Having been elected chairman of a committee of headmasters from posh schools, a man must get to Norwich, a trip that hides unpredictable dangers and mishaps. Though the film is a delightful British comedy, it largely depends upon the comedic timing and presence of John Cleese.
½ December 18, 2012
loved this film, it's very funny it stars John Cleese, I got it on DVD, John Cleese and Alison Steadman were great together, I thought it was a great British comedy, it's an great film it was actually better than what I thought
½ September 4, 2012
British and John Cleese comedy at it's best.
Super Reviewer
½ May 14, 2012
This movie puts to test my theory that John Cleese makes any movie he's in instantly better. While John Cleese plays this dignified gentleman (as mentioned on this site's description) to perfection the movie just isn't funny at all. It's just a buildup to the speech he gives at the conference and while the speech is great, the road to get there is very bumpy. The one character that was really funny was Mr. Jolly, this guy would NEVER finish his sentences, NEVER. Granted it's a character that probably worked because he wasn't really given that much screen time whatsoever. If he had been all over the movie, his shtick would've gotten old and quick. But, at the same time, he's not featured enough to make the movie better. I'm not really saying it's a bad movie (two stars feels way too generous) but it's just not funny at all, minor a few exceptions here and there. I really wouldn't recommend this movie at all, even if you must watch every movie John Cleese has ever been in. You can do far better than this film, especially since it's 96 minutes of your life that you will NEVER get back. Think about that, at the end of your life wouldn't you have wanted back these 96 minutes to play with your grandchildren some more???
Super Reviewer
½ April 23, 2012
When a perfectionist and always punctual headmaster gets on the wrong train, his well-organized world is falling to pieces and a trail of chaos ensues. Of course John Cleese is the perfect choice for the British gentleman who is set in his ways and stumbles into a series of misunderstandings and inconveniences. He is easily selling this film even through his slower parts, but the script makes sure to add one wonderfully uncomfortable situation behind the other and makes for a very British, very entertaining experience, even if the film feels a bit dated. One cell phone call would solve the whole problem nowadays. Still, in a way it is sad that there are no such comedies anymore.
March 30, 2012
say 'Cheese' for cleese!!
February 9, 2012
Little known in the US, this movie is hilarious and desearves more recognition.
½ February 5, 2012
Pretty generic, but funny enough.
January 30, 2012
laughed my ass off when i saw this for the first time.
½ January 10, 2012
Typical John Cleese.
½ December 30, 2011
Such an infuriating film! A series of unfortunate events leads John Cleese into a unending spiral of events that ends up with his actions getting more and more frantic and more and more out of control.

But it is a really good movie. Cleese at his very best in my opinion.
½ November 21, 2011
There are a great many films which are painful in their bland mainstreaminess.

And a very few which manage to pull it off, and remain funny to virtually everyone, over a period of several years.

This John Cleese vehicle from the mid 1980s manages to fit into the latter category - it is simply such a very well crafted traditional comedy, that it is impossible not to be touched.

Here we see Cleese very much in Basil Fawlty mode, as an aspiring head-teacher for whom things just don't run smooth when it really matters.

The other classic elements of British Farce are there - major misunderstandings, people getting undresses, well-intentioned old ladies who say the wrong things at the wrong times, and of course Geoffrey Palmer as a straight man.

And just a touch of poignant surrealism in the way the final minute leading into the credits is played out, to offset the traditional production values.

It's straightforward, and unchallenging, and probably the best film about lateness ever made. High praise indeed, for something so mainstream.
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