The Secret Policeman's Third Ball

Real music is provided by Joan Armatrading, Lou Reed, Mark Knopfler with Chet Atkins, and Peter Gabriel, whose Biko lament closes the film. There is also a tribute to Los CampaƱeros of El Salvador by Paul Brady, but otherwise - apart from a few swipes at Reagan and Thatcher courtesy of Spitting Image - politics are out. All the comedians are on top form: Fry & Laurie cocking up 'The Hedge Sketch' to perfection; Phil Cool impersonating the XR4i'd rep on the jammed M25; Lenny Henry as an ancient bluester; and Ben Elton on liberation sexuality (i.e. DIY). O'Neill's direction makes for more than just a run-of-the-mill variety bill.

Release details

Duration: 96 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Ken O'Neill
Screenwriter: Michael Frayn, Chris Langham, Jonathan Lynn, Johnny Speight
Cast: Joan Armatrading
John Cleese
Robbie Coltrane
Phil Cool
Duran Duran
Stephen Fry
Hugh Laurie
Ben Elton
Lenny Henry
Lou Reed
Ruby Wax
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