Dell, a novelist/screenwriter here making his writer-director debut, reveals a pleasing lightness of touch in this whimsical comedy in the manner of The Ghost Goes West (restless spirit, stirred up by bomb, helps to settle ruffled village politics). Stuffed to the brim with quaint characters, it is occasionally guilty of milking its jokes (Rigby's delightfully crumbling butler does his arthritic patter through the castle corridors, with accompanying theme, just once too often). On the other hand there are nicely offhand jokes like the village high street with shopfronts all indicating ownership by members of the Bucket family except for one interloping Pail; and the resolution, with the squire (O'Rorke) happily looking forward to life as a poacher when it turns out that he owes his position to an ancestral usurpation, is perfectly in keeping with the spirit of gently anarchic satire.
Don't Take It To Heart
Cast and crew